|Accrington Cricket Club|
Ramsbottom won the first trophy of the season by beating Accrington by 3 wickets in the Second XI Cup Final in low scoring match at Thorneyholme Road.
Spencer Woods was named 'Man of the match ' for a battling unbeaten innings of 39 that won the match for Ramsbottom.
The visitors won the toss and asked Accrington to bat on a damp wicket that had been covered all week due to the persistent rain that had soaked the ground.
Accrington lost their first wicket at 9 when Martin Whittle hit a ball from Mark Howarth high in the air to Bobby Horrocks who took the catch running round from mid off. Nasser Hussain soon followed hitting again finding Horrocks who took a good low catch as the ball dipped on him, also off Howarth. The same combination struck again when Stefan Heins, who had played some promising strokes, was dismissed for 9.
It was Steve Eardley's turn to join the action next as he dismissed Paul Barratt lbw to a ball that shot along the ground. Eardley also dismissed Wayne Roberts and Abbass Sadiq as 33-5 became 40-6. Waheed Hussain then played the only innings of note for Accrington as he showed the application required a difficult surface to make 20 before wicketkeeper Andy Holt claimed his wicket off the bowling of Rizwan Shahid.
Eardley was Ramsbottom's most successful bowler with 3-19, Howarth took 3-29, Shahid 2-20, Ghulam Abbass 1-7 and left arm spinner Garfield Moreton 1-11 off 10 overs as Accrington were dismissed for 86.
The home side strove to make an early breakthrough with Kamran Khan and Graeme Sneddon opening the bowling. The first wicket fell at 9 when Ramsbottom skipper Julian Marcroft was bowled by Sneddon's slower ball for 4. This brought in Spencer Woods to join Chris Wood and between then this pair edged to score up to 32 before Wood was given out lbw to Accrington skipper Len Dewhurst for 14. Robert Read was stumped by Barratt off Dewhurst and Horrocks caught behind off Danny Greenwood as Accrington got back in the match at 37-4.
Andy Holt joined Woods and these two put on 18 before Waheed Hussain induced a false stroke by Holt, who was caught by Danny Greenwood at short cover for 5. Waheed's next over yielded 21 runs and the target was now just 9 runs away with Woods taking some blows on his arms and hands as he fought to take the cup back to Acre Bottom.
An inspired bowling change that introduced Nasser Hussain into the attack gave the home supporters some hope as the young medium pacer dismissed Rizwan Shahid and Garfield Moreton in his first over but Woods remained in control and Ramsbottom won the trophy that eluded them last season by 3 wickets.