Chorley one step from major final

Chorley players rush to congratulate Gaurav Dhar 'after his tremendous catch in their cup tie
Chorley players rush to congratulate Gaurav Dhar 'after his tremendous catch in their cup tie
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Chorley are just one win away from a trip to the home of Gloucestershire County Cricket Club.

Andrew Holdsworth’s men moved through to the semi-finals of the ECB National Knockout Competition after a comprehensive seven-wicket win over York on Sunday at Windsor Park.

Their reward is a last-four encounter at home on August 31 against Derbyshire outfit Sandiacre Town, who defeated Northern at the weekend.

Chorley will now have visions of emulating the club’s great sides of the 1990s, who reached the final of the competition in three successive years – winning it twice – from 1994 to 1996.

In those days, the final was held at Lord’s but this year’s showpiece match will take place at the County Ground in Bristol.

Despite their struggles in the Northern League Division One this season, Chorley have saved their best performances for the cup – and Sunday was no different.

Despite losing the toss, the home side made a mockery of the visitors’ skipper decision to bat first as they were routed for just 107 inside 35 overs.

Left-handed opener Simon Lambert (48) scored nearly half of his team’s runs, as Chorley bowlers ran amok – their cause being helped by three terrific catches from Kie McCullagh, Dave Fisher and Gaurav Dhar.

Chris Harty finished with 3-13 off nine overs, while Bill Smith took 3-16 from 6.3 overs. All-rounder Will Moulton also chipped in with 2-21.

In reply, Holdsworth and Dickinson both scored 21 and professional Mohammed Jamal ensured victory with an unbeaten 34.

The home side reached their victory target for the loss of three wickets in the 27th over.

Chorley’s cause was perhaps aided by their league match against Morecambe the previous day being abandoned without a ball being bowled – allowing them to rest up.

Indeed, the weather wreaked havoc with the Northern League’s fixtures on Saturday, much to the dismay of second-placed Leyland.

While leaders Blackpool were able to play to a finish against Lancaster, David Makinson’s men were unable to force a result – although it was not looking promising for them in their home match against Kendal.

Nick Lewthwaite caused no end of problems to the home batsmen as he took all eight wickets as Leyland posted 153.

In reply, Kendal were 49-2 off just 12.1 overs when the rain brought an end to proceedings.

Blackpool took full advantage as they thrashed Lancaster at Lune Road by 92 runs. The visitors posted 154-6 with Matthew Houston hitting 50. In reply, Lancaster were dismissed for a paltry 62, with Christi Viljoen taking 9-21.

Preston’s Sajid Patel hit 61 as Saeed Bariwala’s men set Netherfield 164 for victory. The Cumbrians were 69-4 in their run chase when the heavens opened.

In the only other match to beat the weather, St Annes defeated Barrow by 36 runs.