Morecambe continued their sparkling form in the Northern Premier Cricket League and stretched their unbeaten run to 11 games with a comprehensive thrashing of Fleetwood by seven wickets.
Morecambe were indebted to the brilliance of Gareth Pedder who smashed a fantastic unbeaten century to see Morecambe home.
Fleetwood skipper Mat Clarke decided his side would bat first on a fresh Morecambe pitch but despite a good start by professional David King and Adam Parker,
Morecambe skipper Josh Dixon knew his side must start well with the ball against Fleetwood professional David King and Adam Parker Morecambe’s star seam bowler Eddy Read found the edge of King’s bat.
Suraj Randiv then trapped Parker on the back foot, the umpire doing the rest before Jamie Cassidy returned to remove Mike Clinning (12) caught at mid-on by Josh Dixon.
However, Dean Bell (37) and Tom Wilson (79 not out) built a very effective and high scoring partnership, Bell eventually falling to the returning Read caught smartly at mid-on by Matthew Derham.
Adam Shorrocks (3) and James Wilson (9) didn’t really provide Tom Wilson with the sufficient support to go on, Fleetwood ultimately finishing on 189-6.
Morecambe were without stalwart Mark Woodhead but Gareth Pedder joined his skipper at the top of the order but they got off to the worst possible start as King found some early movement to graze the edge of Josh Dixon’s bat.
Suraj Randiv (52) joined Gareth Pedder who instantly went on the offensive.
With Pedder flying at one end Randiv batted intelligently at the other, manoeuvring the ball thus manipulating the field and with it the bowler’s lengths.
Both began to pile on the pressure, the boundaries continuing the flow as Mat Clarke rang the changes. Whatever Clarke did however it seemed to make no difference as Pedder launched a huge maximum from the bowling of Kieran Mgann.
Pedder was to bring up his 50 first, his first of the season as the former professional showed his class at this level. Scoring continued to be fluent and free flowing as Pedder moved through the 70s with great ease.
Randiv joined Pedder in bringing up his 50 with another trademark cover drive as the Morecambe professional continued his fine all-round performance. He was however to go as he looked to hit Mike Clinning over the boundary at the football ground end.
With cheers and jubilation over the road as Morecambe FC held out to beat their arch rivals Accrington Stanley for the first time many of their fans arrived at the club just in time to see Pedder crunch his 16th boundary of his innings to bring up his first ever Northern League Division One hundred.
A wonderful fluent innings full of high class and quality stroke play from the local Morecambe man.
Morecambe were to lose Ryan Pearson before the end but Lewis Edge (25 not out) finished the game alongside the wonderful Gareth Pedder in typical fashion with a glorious cover drive ensuring Morecambe took home the vital 12 points which sees them now 14 points clear at the top of the league.
Morecambe travel to the free scoring Leyland next week in what looks to be another tricky encounter with just five games left to go.