Morecambe ensured they gained yet another 15 point win on Saturday as they comprehensively brushed Preston aside in a game they dominated from start to finish. Posting 180-3 declared in a game reduced to 38 overs they then bowled Preston out for just 43.
On a day when the sky was black and filled with drizzle for a time it looked unlikely that there would be cricket at Woodhill Lane, however with the new drainage system working wonders it wasn’t long before the rain stopped and cricket was to begin.
Losing the toss Morecambe were asked to have a bat first and made a suspect start as Lewis Smith (3) was bowled by Andrew Starkie. Morecambe, however, through skipper Josh Dixon (31) and professional Suraj Randiv (26) rebuilt as the pair mixed aggression with caution taking Morecambe towards the 50 mark.
With both looking settled it was a surprise to see Dixon go caught behind off the bowling of Shabnam Ali for a fluent 31. Randiv then combined with Pearson taking Morecambe forward the professional beginning to find his feet with a couple of lusty blows.
Randiv however was to go attempting yet another stroke over the top looking to accelerate the run rate.
This brought Lewis Edge to the crease and he almost instantly began to show his class. He combined beautifully with his partner Pearson and the pair looked unstoppable.
When finally Pearson was adjudged LBW for 38 Morecambe had reached 180 and skipper Josh Dixon called his troops in to concentrate on their bowling, ensuring they had another five overs in which to bowl Preston out.
With Eddy Read still carrying a hamstring strain Gareth Pedder opened the bowling alongside Suraj Randiv and the pair hit a rhythm almost instantly.
Pedder removed Cairns for a duck and the former professional looked back to his best.
Pedder bowled with superb control and aggression in his seven over spell in which five of those overs were maidens. Randiv joined Pedder in the act collecting the wickets of Sajid Patel (2) and Akmal Shah (4) in quick succession.
With Pedder taken from the attack it was left to Tommy Clough (2-13) to join Randiv and the pair continued to take what was slowly becoming a procession of wickets.
The brilliance of the Morecambe attack reduced Preston to 24-9. However, skipper Andrew Starkine (12) ensured Preston added a few more before the close before he was finally caught by Dixon at short leg.
Another important 15 point victory for Morecambe moving them to 128 points at the top of the Northern Premier Cricket League.
Morecambe next week travel to third place Blackpool looking to continue their table topping form as we reach halfway through the season.