Morecambe bounce back with big win over Fleetwood

Laurence Read on his way to a half century against Fleetwood. Picture: Tony North
Laurence Read on his way to a half century against Fleetwood. Picture: Tony North
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Morecambe bounced back in style on Bank Holiday Monday with a big win over well-fancied Fleetwood at Woodhill Lane.

Batting first in a game reduced to 37 overs per side the defending Northern League champions made a competitive 129-8 before tearing through the visiting batting line-up bowling them out for just 42.

Morecambe made a solid start with the bat on a damp pitch through skipper Josh Dixon (10) and Laurence Read (52) as Fleetwood professional Travis Dean and the left-armer Adam Parker bowled with control early on.

Dixon departed looking to accelerate the score however and shortly after sub-professional Daryn Smit (4) was back in the pavilion.

Ryan Pearson rotated with Read but all found the going tough on a pitch which all afternoon offered assistance to the bowlers.

It wasn’t until late in the Morecambe innings when Lewis Edge (17) and crucially Viraj Bhatia (23) upped the rate alongside Read.

Read used an unorthodox approach with a range of ramps and reverse sweeps manipulating the field as the hosts crucially reached 129-8.

A good start was crucial with the ball and Morecambe got just that with Laurence’s brother Eddy trapping Fleetwood danger man Parker plumb in front.

At the other end youngster Jamie Cassidy calmly went about his business with his increased control and pace becoming more of a threat week on week.

That pressure bought him his first wicket as debutant Luke Pearson held on at mid-off to claim Tommy Wilson for a globe.

With pressure at both ends professional Dean was short of strike and it soon told as Read got the ball to jag back sharply and pin the Australian plumb in front.

The pace man was then on a hat-trick as Smith dived forwards to remove Patrick Ashton first ball.

The third wicket didn’t come but the back of the Fleetwood innings was broken with Ramsbottom professional Smit, filling in as Suraj Randiv’s visa issues continue, to the fore.

The South African’s mix of leg breaks and sliding deliveries did for Dean Bell (6) and James Wilson (4) in successive deliveries to again see the Woodhill crowd on the edge of their seats willing a hat-trick.

It was not to be for Smit but the returning Cassidy collected a further two wickets in his second spell, one brilliantly caught and bowled followed by a fine grab at square leg by Laurence Read.

It was left for Smit to remove Jack Wilkinson and claim the 15 points for the Woodhill Lane side as they bounced back from defeat at Blackpool on Saturday.

Dixon’s side next head to Preston on Saturday.