Morecambe struggle with the bat again as Garstang’s fine start goes on

Reuben Orr looks on as Michael Walling goes on the attack for Garstang at Woodhill Lane. Pictures: Tim Gilbert (Preston Photographic Society)
Reuben Orr looks on as Michael Walling goes on the attack for Garstang at Woodhill Lane. Pictures: Tim Gilbert (Preston Photographic Society)

Garstang outplayed Morecambe from the first ball of the day at Woodhill Lane on Saturday as the hosts made it back-to-back defeats to start the new season.

The home side were bowled out for just 91 with the Riversiders keeping up their 100 per cent start to life in the Northern Premier League by knocking off the runs for the loss of just three wickets.

Mark Woodhead edges behind

Mark Woodhead edges behind

Visiting captain Mark Walling won the toss and elected to field on a pitch that was still a little bit soft and wet and would offer plenty to the bowlers.

An improving forecast also meant batting conditions were only likely to improve as the day went on.

Morecambe captain Ryan Pearson’s preparations weren’t helped with opening batsman Lewis Smith hit on the knee with a ball in the warm-up with his injury only allowing him to bat at number 10.

League newcomers Garstang, fresh from victory over Fulwood & Broughton on the opening day, flew out of the blocks with the home side soon reduced to 25-4.

That brought captain Pearson (20) and new man Alex Briggs (16) to the wicket and they began to build a partnership that was slowly bringing Morecambe back into the game.

They were soon both removed by Fayaz Ughradar (3-16) however playing loose shots.

The lower order failed to spare the rest of the batting line-up’s blushes with the Garstang seamers showing great consistency.

Opening pair Danny Gilbert (4-26) and Ian Walling (1-13) bowled with control throughout the first 20 overs whilst moving the ball around off the seam and causing Morecambe all sorts of problems.

Travis Pieters (2-10) chipped in with a couple of wickets at the end of the innings.

Morecambe went into the field knowing that they had to get early wickets to stand any chance in this game but the home side’s bowlers struggled to make an impact while a couple of chances also went down in the field.

Garstang made short work of chasing down Morecambe’s total finishing on 93-3 down with Michael Wellings (23 not out), Michael Walling (21) and Tom Wells (18) the main contributors.

Tommy Clough, Danny Edwards and Zac Buchanan all picked up a wicket apiece.

On Sunday, Morecambe exited the ECB National Knockout at the hands of a strong Furness side.

Pearson’s men restricted the Cumbrians to 174 with Edwards and Jamie Cassidy among the wickets before Morecambe were again bowled out 91.

This weekend sees them travel to Fulwood & Broughton on Saturday before T20 action gets underway at Garstang on Sunday.