There was good news and bad news from Chorley’s long trip to Barrow on Saturday.
The good news was not only did they beat the weather to get a game in, but they also they showed guts and resolve to earn a creditable draw, a result not to be sniffed at seeing as the home side had reeled off four wins out of four prior to yesterday.
But the downside was that the visitors were second best for most of the game and had to rely on a stand of steely resolve by skipper Andy Holdsworth and the seasoned Iain Critchley to rescue a share of the spoils.
A wicket that had looked slow and benign when Barrow had plundered 168 from a rain reduced quota of 38 overs suddenly appeared treacherous when Chorley began their reply.
Barrow’s wily skipper Daryl Wearing is no James Anderson, but he managed to extract plenty of bite and unpredictable bounce, and largely due to his efforts, the visitors’ run chase never got going.
After a slow, stuttering start, they then crumbled to 35 for 5, but then Holdsworth and Critchley dug in, playing with patience and sense.
And by the time the latter chipped Wearing into Sam Dutton’s grateful hands after being caught in two minds by a wide one, Chorley were within sight of the draw which they eventually clinched as the clock approached 7.50pm.
In truth, that Barrow total always looked imposing, and it had come largely due to a splendid third wicket stand of 105 engineered by Ryan Brown and stand-in pro Ben Dunk.
After a late start then another long rain interruption, they lit up an afternoon when a bitter North Sea wind had the clouds scudding over the ground.
A magnificent catch by David Fisher from a last over skier by Wearing was one of the few highlights for Chorley, and the visitors had little else to cheer until that late stand saved their bacon.
Elsewhere, the 2nd team suffered a defeat to their Barrow counterparts by 25 runs.
Chorley opted to field first. Barrow suffered an early loss of Toby Mowat with only five runs on the board and he was
one of two victims for Kieran McCullagh.
They steadied the ship and posted a total of 120-6 with Adam Mccullagh (2-31) and Ed Moulton (2-17) enjoyed the most success with the ball.
In response to the target, only Keiran McCullagh 20 and John Hotham 22 were the only batsmen to have their reputation in tact as Chorley were all out for 95.
Meanwhile, on Sunday, the match involving Chorley 1st team and Bradshaw was a victim of the weather.