Rock-bottom Preston having a woeful summer

Action from Preston's defeat by Fulwood and Broughton in May
Action from Preston's defeat by Fulwood and Broughton in May

Preston might be forgiven for steering clear of a look at the Northern League table.

To say this summer has been tough for the West Cliff outfit is an understatement.

They have lost all 12 league games to date and have only five bonus points to show for their efforts.

The fact that Penrith, who are second-bottom, are 66 points clear, underlines the struggle Preston are having.

It is a sad state of affairs for Preston who were one of the Northern League founder members in 1951.

Twice they have won the league outright – the last time in 1983 – while they were joint champions in 1967.

As recently as 2009 they finished runners-up, while the last two seasons saw them claim respectable eighth and seventh-place finishes.

But it has just not clicked for them in 2018 and a slide out of the Northern League looks inevitable.

Promotion and relegation between the Northern League and Palace Shield was introduced recently.

Garstang and Fulwood and Broughton – last season’s first and second in the Palace Shield – opted to go up to the Northern League.

Should the Palace Shield’s current promotion chasers choose likewise at the end of the season, Preston would be relegated.

Tomorrow they make the trip to Broadwater to face Fleetwood, who sit seventh.

It will be a game in which Fleetwood will be looking to bounce back in after defeat at leaders Netherfield last week.

They certainly made the Cumbrians work for the win, South African professional Neels Bergh hitting 101 not out off 105 balls as Fleetwood posted 237-4.

Netherfield were to chase successfully though, helped by some strong batting of their own.

Fulwood and Broughton make the trip to Stanley Park to face Blackpool who are in second place.

Last Saturday F&B put a win on the board, beating Garstang.

At the heart of that win was a knock of 90 from their pro Simon Kerrigan.

That was a display praised by Garstang skipper Mark Walling, although he saw the loss as a missed opportunity for his side.

“Simon batted really well but we came away a little bit disappointed because we’d been 115-1 in reply,” Walling said.

“At one stage we thought they were going to get 250 or 260 so it was a good effort to keep them to what we did.

“If we had seen out the overs then we would have won but we lost too many wickets in the middle of the innings.

“They had one player who made 90 while we had a 
couple in the 40s and one in the 30s.

“You need people 
making 60s and 70s to win games in the Northern League and that’s something we have to learn.”