Lancaster captain hopes pro can fire his side to Twenty20 finals

Rameez Raja on his way to a Twenty20 hundred against Morecambe. Picture: Tony North
Rameez Raja on his way to a Twenty20 hundred against Morecambe. Picture: Tony North
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Lancaster captain Ben Simm is hoping professional Rameez Raja can fire his side to Twenty20 finals day.

The winner of the LPNM Lunesiders’ group with Morecambe and Preston will host the lucrative culmination of the TWP Wealth competition.

Simm’s side started with a 29-run win over Morecambe at Woodhill Lane on Friday night with Pakistan international Raja scoring exactly 100.

They now travel to Preston on Wednesday before hosting the reverse fixture with their local rivals at Lune Road on Friday night, June 5.

Simm said: “The Twenty20 is an important competition with the winner hosting finals day.

“We knew what we were getting when we brought Rameez over but we didn’t expect him to score a century in his first game!

“But what a knock. It was spectacular and long may it continue.

“We’d still have Preston to play at home but with three wins out of three you’re pretty much sure to be going through.”

It wasn’t all plain sailing at the weekend with Simm’s side going down to a final-ball defeat to Netherfield in the Northern Premier League on Saturday.

The off spinner said: “It was very difficult to take.

“It was probably our worst performance on the season.

“We put a decent score on the board but our batting and fielding wasn’t up to our usual standards.

“It felt like 15 points slipped from our grasp.”

After the Twenty20 games they will look to bounce back in the league at Penrith on Saturday.

Simm said: “We got well beaten there last year and they won at our place too.

“It was the first two times we’d played them so we definitely owe them one.

“We’re looking to get our league form back on track too because it’s been a poor couple of weeks.”

The Twenty20 clash between Lancaster and Morecambe at Lune Road starts at 6.30pm on Friday night.