Morecambe clinch vital points in win over Fleetwood

Daryn Smit for Morecambe in their game against Fleetwood.
Daryn Smit for Morecambe in their game against Fleetwood.

Struggling Morecambe picked up 15 valuable points on Saturday after a seven-wicket victory away at Fleetwood.

Home captain Dean Bell won the toss and chose to bat first, but Fleetwood failed to set a big enough target and were bowled out for just 88.

Substitute professional Daryn Smit was the star for the visitors, taking 6-22 from his 14.3 overs.

Having featured for the Woodhill Lane side on several occasions in 2016, the South African, now attached to Derbyshire, returned in style at Broadwater.

The Fleetwood innings never got going, skipper Bell not troubling the scorers before being bowled by Eddy Read (2-18), while Mat Clark (4) suffered the same fate to the same bowler.

Professional Neels Bergh at least made a fight of it for Fleetwood, his knock of 50 off 72 balls gave the hosts a glimmer of hope, but he was to eventually fall to his fellow countryman Smit with Damian Gudgeon taking the catch.

There was little resistance elsewhere, Smit removing Benjamin Reader (8) LBW,before Jarrod Coombe (9) became another victim, Gudgeon stumping the Fleetwood batsman.

Smit and Gudgeon combined twice more to remove Joseph McCluskie (8) and Adam Sharrocks (0) while Tom Wilson (0) was caught and bowled by Adam Derham (1-5).

Joe Bell was run out without scoring and Sam Bell also failed to trouble the scorers when he was bowled by Smit, James Amor was left on his own at the crease on one not out as Fleetwood were all out for 88 from 39.3 overs.

Lloyd Smith (0-19) and Tommy Clough (0-17) also had spells with the ball for 
Morecambe, neither took a wicket but both played their part in what was a very successful day in the field for the visitors.

In reply, Morecambe reached their target in just 20.3 overs for the loss of three wickets.

Opener Viraj Bhatia made 17 but he was caught by Bell off the bowling of McCluskie (3-27), who took all three of the Fleetwood wickets.

Lewis Smith (4) fell in the same way as Bhatia, Bell catching off McCluskie, as did Adam Derham without troubling the scorers.

However Smit (24no) and captain Ryan Pearson (25no) remained unbeaten and got Morecambe over the line with plenty of overs to spare to claim 15 vital points in their fight for Northern Premier League survival.

Other Fleetwood bowlers who had spells with the ball but failed to take wickets were Bell (0-22), Amor (0-15) and Bergh (0-13), while 19 of Morecambe’s 89 runs came from extras.