Westgate stay top as Shires collapse
Westgate retained their place at the top of the Westmorland Cricket League Division One at the weekend with a 45 run victory over Shireshead.
Westgate elected to bat first but found it very hard going right from the start.
The score had only reached 22 for 1 from the first 17 overs but G Tattersall (27) and A Arestidou (51) grafted hard to ensure a defendable target was achieved at 141 for 7.
Shireshead’s three bowlers of Dave Jack, Tom Jacques and Rowan Upton all bowled well, and Jack in particular will feel that lady luck has not really been on his side all season.
The Shireshead reply began in complete contrast to the Westgate innings as Tom Jacques and Joe Cunliffe added 27 without loss from eight overs.
With only 115 required for victory from 37 overs with all 10 wickets in hand it was hard to see how Shireshead could contrive to lose from such a position of strength, but lose they did.
The turning point came when Cunliffe was run out by a good piece of fielding attempting a tight second run to spark a collapse to 44 for 4.
Westgate then latched on to the opportunities given them to turn the screw mercilessly.
A combination of tight bowling by Tattersall (5 for 35), alongside a lack of belief and poor decision making left only Nick Rafferty (22) showing real resistance.
A sharp caught and bowled by Z Buchanan (3 for 18) finally saw Rafferty off to seal a hard-fought Westgate victory by 45 runs thereby leaving Shireshead’s hopes of a hat-trick of titles hanging by the finest of threads.