Leyland and Barrow resumed hostiles on the opening day of the Northern Premier Cricket League and fought out an exciting draw.
They were last season’s top two, with Leyland pipping the Cumbrians for the title in last September’s thrilling climax.
The fixture list pitted them together at Fox Lane to get the 2014 campaign underway, and there were plenty of runs in the sunshine.
Leyland won the toss and elected to bat first, a sensible decision with them going on to post 228-5.
Luis Reece and Alex Ross led the charge, hitting 83 and 89 respectively.
Lancashire ace Reece struck 10 boundaries, facing 125 balls for his impressive knock.
Ross,batting at number three, dispatched three sixes and nine fours to the boundary, averaging almost a run a ball.
Barrow replied with 175-9 in the second innings, Leyland unable to dislodge the visitors’ last pair to claim victory.
Tayyab Asfar took 4-41 and Daniel Lamb 3-38, while David Makinson and Karl Cross claimed a wicket apiece.
Chorley got their campaign off to a winning start at the expense of Preston.
Andrew Holdsworth’s men won by 45 runs at Windsor Park.
Will Moulton’s 41 and a knock of 28 from opener David Fisher helped them to put 161 on the board.
Preston’s Soyeb Dukanwala claimed 4-33 in a seven-over spell, Afzal Kapadia and Saeed Bariwala taking three each.
The visitors fell well short in their chase, their last wicket going down in the 38th over with 116 posted.
Sarfaz Patel was the stand-out Preston batsman, the No.6 hitting a half century off just 51 deliveries before Moulton claimed his scalp.
The wickets were well spread, Keiran McCullagh taking 3-13, with Richard Flood, Billy Smith and Moulton helping themselves to two apiece.
Fleetwood had the better of a drawn game away to Morecambe. The 2012 winners were 235-8 after batting first.
Jean De Villers top-scored with 63, Matt Clark adding an unbeaten 50.
In reply, Morecambe were 177-6, former Leyland pro Brett Pelser scoring 52 and Ryan Pearson 42.
Lancaster lost by 65 runs to Darwen at Lune Road.
The bulk of Darwen’s tally of 166 was attributed to Ammer Mirza and John Cordingley.
Opener Mirza scored 72 and Cordingley 44, with the rest well restricted by the home attack – Iain Burstow took 5-20 and Iain Perrieman 3-43.
Lancaster were 101 all out in reply, decent knocks coming from Danny Welbourne (31) and Ben Simm (30).
St Annes beat Netherfield by five wickets at Vernon Road.
The hosts asked Netherfield to bat first, with the visitors putting a very respectable 206-8 on the board.
But St Annes chased their target down thanks to some consistent scoring.
Skipper Andy Kellett hit 44, Lukman Vahaluwala 42 and Adam Holt 35.
League new boys Penrith were two-wicket winners over Kendal. Jamie How struck a fine 119 for Kendal as they posted 228. But Penrith replied with 229-8.
l Vernon Carus began the defence of their Moore and Smalley Palace Shield title with an eight-wicket win over Whittingham and Goosnargh.
Newly-promoted W&G batted first at Factory Lane and found themselves bowled out for 84 after 24 overs.
Ben Llewellin claimed 6-28 and Paul Hayton 3-46, with the visitors’ only resistance coming from Kasir Masood who hit 22.
Carus knocked off the runs inside 19 overs, opener Ian Dunn unbeaten on 32 and James McDonagh hitting 32.
There was a first-day defeat for last year’s runners-up Penwortham.
They lost to Freckleton by 67 runs at Bush Lane.
James Whitehead hit eight fours on his way to a knock of 59 and Joshua Holden struck 46 as Freck posted 189-8.
Six of the wickets were taken by Jon Roebuck who bowled unchanged.
In reply, Penwortham were dismissed for 122 in the 43rd over. There were gutsy knocks of 37 and 30 from Phil Chapple and Martyn Brierley respectively.
But four wickets from Andrew Hogarth helped the home side get the better of their visitors, with Daniel Fisher and Jamie Hogarth taking two each.
Longridge started well with a 51-run win over Fulwood and Broughton.
They elected for first use of their home wicket and were 158-7 in their 45 overs, opener John Simpson hit 60 and Luke Platt an unbeaten 32.
F&B struggled to 107 all out in reply, No.10 bat Chris Brookes top scoring with 24*.
Roger Kaye and Rory McDowell shared six wickets for Longridge.
Great Eccleston enjoyed their day by the Riverside, beating BAC/EE Preston by five wickets.
They chose to bowl first after winning the toss, BAC putting a healthy 163-4 on the board.
Nikesh Modessa faced 104 balls on his way to an unbeaten knock of 70, and Thomas Wilcock scored 40.
Reza Hussain led Great Ecc’s victory charge, hitting 84 off just 91 deliveries.
Will Thistlethwaite added 26, with Amin Patel (31*) and Ashfaque Patel (2*) seeing them over the line.
Withnell Fold, making their Premier Division debut, lost by eight wickets to Fylde.
The home side were bowled out for 70 after being put in, Fylde going on to chase down their target for the loss of two wickets.
Garstang were winners by three wickets in their clash with Thornton Cleveleys at Illawalla.
Batting first, hosts Thornton were bowled out for 113 in the 43rd over.
Rob Dingle top-scored with 26, with Garstang sharing the wickets between Ian Walling (5-27), Gareth Jennings (3-38) and Will Procter (2-47).
Garstang replied with 116-7 to claim victory, Allan Cook hitting 41 and Mark Winstanley 21.