Accrington's 15-match unbeaten run is over following a 20-run defeat at the hands of Ramsbottom despite a defiant 85 from Simon Hansen.
Accrington bowled well to the set field, limiting boundaries in the early stages of the game.
The wicket of Steve Dearden remained elusive however, and despite hitting only two boundaries at the end of the game, the batsman went on to score a strong 75, a knock that proved a real thorn in the side of Accrington.
“Steven is a great player,” said Accy captain Graham Lloyd.
“We restricted him well in the early stages, I thought Jacob Clarke did a great job of containing him.
“He was unfortunate not to claim a wicket in the early stages – we dropped Dearden when he was still on nought.”
In the field, professional Ashar Zaidi took 3-62, but was unable to thwart Ramsbottom on their journey to reaching their 197 total.
In response, Hansen whittled a defiant 85 onto the scoreboard to give hope to the away side but a succession of wickets, including a duck for Zaidi at the hands of Sam Halstead, meant Accy fell just short of the target.
“I don’t think I’d change anything about the way we approached the game, it was really close and sometimes that’s just the way it goes. Simon Hansen was great for us again this weekend, as he is every weekend – he’s very consistent.
“He impresses not just with the bat, but as an all-rounder.
“On the day, we probably didn’t deserve to win the game. Ramsbottom are a good side and you can’t win them all – they were too strong on the day.
“We still took away four points and that might yet prove to be important come the end of the season.
“We’re hoping to return to our winning ways next week.”
CHURCH’s game against reigning champions Lowerhouse went the distance on Sunday as the visitors clinched victory with just four balls to spare.
The game started poorly for Church as Lowerhouse professional Francois Haasbroek smashed his way to 104 before Joe Martin put an additional 64 to the target.
Lowerhouse batted out the overs to end on a comfortable 242-6.
Church professional Bodisha sparked the chase into life, making an incredible 79 in almost as many balls.
A series of good innings from the middle order steadily ate away at the champions’ total. Harvey Aspin and skipper Craig Fergusson both made 32 as the captain brought his side across the finish line with two wickets.
ENFIELD recorded a seemingly easy win, beating East Lancs by a comfortable 101 runs.
Captain Adam Bracewell was in fine form, spraying leather all over Alexandra Meadows. Bracewell smashed his way to 41 to help Enfield on their way towards 190-8.
Batsmen Hamill (36) and Fazal (37) kept the run rate ticking over.
“We lost the toss and were made to bat on a really poor wicket – the conditions really didn’t help us,” explained Bracewell. “I didn’t really know how it’d play out so I felt that 190 was a decent score to amount to on that surface.”
The tables turned as Enfield took to the field feeling confident that they could seal the win. The Enfield bowlers dashed any hopes of an East Lancs victory in the early overs as three
batsmen were quickly dismissed without making double figures.
“It was a bowler’s wicket and during the break our bowlers felt sure they could finish the job,” said Bracewell.
Hassan Fazal posted impressive figures of 5-37 before David Bracewell cleaned up the tail order, taking 4-5.
“We’re still taking it one game at a time – I’m uncertain of our hopes for the season really.
“We’ve got another busy weekend coming up so hopefully we can keep picking up points.”