Rainhill 61 (Qaiser Ashraf 28, Tomas Sephton 5-12)
Northern 65-0 (Chris Laker 32*, Taylor Cornall 27*)
Northern won by 10 wickets
Rainhill's impressive four-match winning run came to an abrupt halt with a comprehensive home defeat to Northern.
In a match with few positives for Rainhill the scale of the defeat will be of more concern than the loss itself. Northern are, after all, a talented side who are presently sitting third in the table. However, following hard-won victories against Formby, Lytham, Orrell and New Brighton with this kind of performance is as difficult to accept as it is to explain.
Rainhill won the toss, after which it all went downhill for the home side. Electing to bat, Rainhill lost opener Mike Rotheram for 0 in the first over. The top order struggled against Northern's bowling attack of Liam Grey (3-31) and Daniel Houghton (2-18) and a flurry of wickets saw Rainhill struggling on 12-4. When Anuj Dal was bowled by Houghton for 6, Rainhill were staring down the barrel with the score on 20-5.
Qaiser Ashraf (28) and James Clarke (12 not out) set about the task of at least aiding their side to a semi-respectable total. The duo defiantly held out against some determined bowling, and managed to put together a partnership of 33. Qaiser's resistance was ended when we was stumped by James Cole off the bowling of Tomas Sephton (5-12) - a wicket that ended any realistic hopes Rainhill had of salvaging something from the match. A captivating spell of bowling from Sephton in which he took the final four wickets without a run being scored saw Rainhill slump to a dismal total of 61 all out.
Faced with a target of 62 for victory, Northern had little difficulty and openers Chris Laker (32 not out) and Taylor Cornall (27 not out) crossed the finish line in 21.3 overs.
Rainhill's next match is away to league leaders Bootle.
Points: Rainhill 0pts, Northern 25pts
Updated 04:17 - 21 Jul 2019 by Andrew Page