Thursday 12 April 2007 

Red Rose Victorious At Old Trafford

Lancashire ran out winners by 21 runs in the first of their two one-day friendlies against Durham CC at Old Trafford.

With a good crowd in attendance, Durham won the toss and sent Lancs in to bat on a wicket which looked to would favour the bowlers early on.

After the loss of Iain Sutcliffe with the score on 3; Mal Loye and Mark Chilton settled the ship with a 64 run partnership, before the Captain was dismissed for 27. Loye showed the England selectors what they are missing in the Caribbean, scoring 80 in an innings which included 8 fours and 2 sixes.

Lancashire finished 224-8 off their 50 overs, with most players spending good time at the crease. But it was the 37 runs from Paul Horton which pleased Manager Mike Watkinson the most; “Paul spent a very good winter playing for Canberra Comets in Australia and was also amongst the runs on the pre season tour of South Africa. It was good to see him continuing this form and move the ball around the ground today”.

Durham’s run chase didn’t start well with the loss of two early wickets, but when Paul Mustard and Dale Benkenstein both posted half centuries, they looked set for victory; requiring 57 runs with 6 wickets in hand. Bowlers Glen Chapple, Oliver Newby and Tom Smith dug deep and took a succession of vital wickets, swinging the match back into the home teams favour, eventually bowling their opponents out for 203.

(Complete Scoreboard can be found at www.lccc.co.uk)

Team Manager Mike Watkinson says: “It was nice to have won the match today. With the season only a week away, both sides wanted a competitive game and that was evident by the performances from both sides. Great weather and a well attended match, created a good atmosphere which the lads responded too - so it’s a good feeling to have won”.

Durham are set to announce the same 12 for tomorrow’s match, but Lancashire look like making a couple of changes including Mark Chilton who is will be rested ahead of next weeks season opener at Warwickshire.

Tomorrow’s match is FREE for the public to attend. A limited amount of facilities will be open to cater for spectators and gates open at 9am with free parking available on site.