Weekend cricket round-up

Garstang will have to wait before they are officially crowned as the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield Premier Division champions.
Michael Wellings hit 29 for champions-elect Garstang at the weekendMichael Wellings hit 29 for champions-elect Garstang at the weekend
Michael Wellings hit 29 for champions-elect Garstang at the weekend

Mark Walling’s men are certainties to win the title for the first time in their history after the weather wreaked havoc with the penultimate round of fixtures at the weekend.

Their game at home to Great Eccleston was the only one to see any action and the three bonus points they collected means they are all but assured of finishing top after going 12 points clear.

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Even if they fail to collect a single point in their final match against Croston, and second-placed Fulwood and Broughton claim a maximum points haul at Torrisholme, they will still finish top by virtue of losing one fewer game.

However, the champagne will have to remain on ice until after the final ball has been bowled on Saturday as Garstang can still be deducted points for a slow over-rate or any other transgressions.

By winning the league title, Garstang have secured promotion, although they have yet to decide whether they will take up the option of playing in the Northern League Division One next season. It is believed Walling and his team-mates will meet with the club’s committee over the next few weeks before making a decision.

A knock of 29 by Michael Wellings enabled Garstang to post a score of 101-8 off a rain-reduced 22 overs. Great Eccleston were just 1.4 overs into their reply before the weather curtailed proceedings.

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Should Garstang decide to make the step up to the Northern League, it will mean Lancaster will be relegated.

They finished bottom of the NL Division One table despite claiming a terrific home win over second-placed St Annes. Five-wicket hauls from Ben Simm and Charlie Swarbrick saw the visitors routed for just 71.

In reply, Lancaster lost six wickets but reached their revised target of 64 off 25.3 overs.

Kendal also face an anxious wait to see where they will be playing next season. A victory over Preston on Saturday was not enough to lift them out of the relegation zone as Barrow hammered Morecambe to secure their status.

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The Cumbrians’ fate now rests on the battle for second place in the Palace Shield and whether the team who seals runners-up spot also wants to take up the option of playing in the Northern League.

F&B are in pole position to secure second spot, but Vernon Carus still have an opportunity to overhaul them.