Morecambe continued their fantastic form in the Northern Premier League on Saturday as Eddy Read and Suraj Randiv combined brilliantly with the ball to bowl out their nearest league challengers Darwen in a game reduced to 45 overs thanks to the weather.
Batting first Morecambe scrambled to 143-9 in their allocated 45 overs before bowling Darwen out for 106 inside 43 overs.
Mark Woodhead opened the batting alongside recent centurion Gareth Pedder but Reece Davies struck almost instantly, finding the outside edge of Gareth Pedder’s bat.
Suddenly Darwen came to life as yet again Davies found some sideways movement to get rid of Woodhead, caught smartly at first slip by Phil Mustard.
This brought together the Morecambe professional Suraj Randiv and Ryan Pearson who took Morecambe forward to what looked to be a handy platform for the middle order to kick on in the latter overs.
However, Randiv was to be run out in a mix up between himself and Pearson attempting a second run. Suddenly the game had changed dramatically as David Bowden trapped Pearson LBW for 24.
Lewis Edge (16) alongside his skipper Josh Dixon (11) battled to build a platform from which to launch but just as the pair looked settled Dixon was well caught in the deep by John Cordingley, diving away to his right.
Edge followed soon after as Bowden continued to strangle Morecambe with tight lines. Morecambe were indebted to Gert Maartens (20) late on who played a fantastic cameo innings striking two huge maximums to ensure Morecambe reached a competitive 143-9.
Morecambe knew early wickets would be crucial and they got one early as the dangerous Ammer Mirza (12) was well caught by Lewis Edge as he looked to be aggressive against Eddy Read.
This brought John Cordingley to the crease and he joined Phil Mustard at the crease. The pair combined beautifully together as Mustard punished any loose offerings.
Darwen had raced to 48-1 and were looking in a commanding position until Eddy Read produced a wonderful in swinging Yorker to rearrange Mustards stumps.
Cordingley was to show stubborn resistance as Dixon changed things, bringing Randiv into the attack.
The introduction of the Sri Lankan international put a stranglehold on the game as runs now were hard to come by. Read reaped the rewards at the other end removing Scott Jackson and Mark Friend in quick succession.
Darwen had slumped from 48-1 to 55-5, the game firmly swinging Morecambe’s way.
Cue Jordan Clarke (24) who combined really well with John Cordingley (36) calming the situation and taking Darwen forward into what looked like a possible winning position.
The game was to change again in the space of two balls, with the run rate rising, Cordingley was forced to take on Randiv. His attacking intent however only found Pedder at mid-off who took a spectacular one handed catch.
Now the pressure was hyped up on Clarke who the very next ball chipped the ball straight back to Randiv sending Woodhill Lane into raptures.
Clarke’s demise signalled the end as Davies, Painter, and finally Lawrenson fell in quick succession to the brilliant Randiv who claimed mind boggling figures of 5-25 from his 18.4 overs.