Varley inspires Wanderers to Ramsbottom Cup Final

Ian Britcliffe bowling for Ribblesdale in their cup semi-final victory on Sunday
Ian Britcliffe bowling for Ribblesdale in their cup semi-final victory on Sunday
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A fired-up Brannon Varley claimed 6-22 as Ribblesdale Wanderers beat Earby at Church Meadow in Sunday’s Ramsbottom Cup semi-final.

Ribblesdale won the toss and elected to bat, Jackson and Dougall got the innings off to a steady start after Jackson was dropped first ball of the game off Craddock (2-34).

The openers put on 32 before Jackson was caught at point. Ribblesdale added only 50 more runs for the first six wickets, reeling at 82-6, of which Dougall had made 28.

Captain Martin Briggs and Michael Clarkson (15) started the rebuilding effort, taking the home side to 111 before the seventh wicket fell. Ribblesdale were bowled out for 144 as Briggs scored a crucial 37 in what seemed a below-par score. Danny Kegg was the pick of the Earby bowlers (4-25).

Earby got the chase off to a fine start and looked to have been given a huge chance when Matt Wilson was dropped in the third over. Ian Britcliffe took the first wicket at 21 when some quick work behind the stumps by Richard Clarkson saw Wilson stumped.

Varley got the home side into the game, dismissing Earby professional Fahed Rehman for a duck and Walton (11) before the score reached 30.

Kegg (14) and Pollard (16) added 27 before a brilliant piece of fielding by Ben Dougall saw Kegg run out.

Britcliffe returned to the attack and with his first ball scattered the stumps of key man Aron Pollard, who worried Wanderers with a quickfire 40 earlier in the season.

Varley then tore into the Earby tail with the score at 84-6, taking all four remaining wickets as they fell to 98 all out. Varley finished with 6-22, backed up by Britcliffe (2-27).

Wanderers now face Brooksbottom at Cherry Tree on July 28th in the final, and the two sides will play out a dress rehearsal this Saturday at Church Meadow in the league.

Meanwhile, leaders Clitheroe’s remorseless march to a first senior league title since 2010 continued in ominous fashion, collecting another maximum 12 points haul at Preston Old Road. Having dismissed Cherry Tree for 63, courtesy of Jack Dewhurst’s 6-31, the leaders raced to a nine-wicket victory.

Second placed Read returned to winning ways with a three-wicket success over Ribblesdale Wanderers. Jon Harvey claimed 6-37 as Wanderers were restricted to 174-9. Joey Marshall hit a vital half century in the home team’s successful chase that leaves them 28 points behind Clitheroe.

Saurabh Bandekar was the only batsman to reach three figures in the senior league as Whalley won handsomely at Euxton.

The 25-year-old from Mumbai finished unbeaten on 106-his first ton for the club- as Whalley piled up 235-4 from their 45 overs. Euxton hardly made a start and Dave Howard’s 5-22 saw the Chorley outfit bowled out for just 50.

Salesbury also enjoyed victory against Great Harwood by three runs as Susantha Pradeep took 5-81 and made 64.