MAWDESLEY ended the 2012 season by slipping to a 19 run defeat away to Thornton Cleveleys.
Although the league title was secured last weekend, the fixture was anything but a dead rubber, with Thornton still in danger of being relegated at the start of play.
Mawdesley opted to bowl first having won the toss and made an immediate breakthrough when Kane Hatchard dismissed Curtis Lenoir in just the second over. Thornton had 14 year old Taylor Cornall to thank for anchoring their innings, the Lancashire academy player displayed maturity beyond his years to score a boundary-free 31 as Thornton totalled 156-9.
In the absence of Alex Berry, Mawdesley promoted Ben Ward to the top of the order and, along with Brian Parr, he helped the reply get off to a brisk start.
A partnership of 32 came to an end when Parr (12) miscued an attempted pull to be caught at square leg. Matt Watkinson had a rare failure, departing for a duck off the bowling of Thomas Williams. Ward and Dave Whiteley set about rebuilding the innings, keeping their side up with the required rate until Whiteley (17) was caught in the deep.
Ward (29) was the fifth wicket to fall and was quickly followed by Darren le Marinel and James Bethell to leave the visitors on 87-7 with six runs an over required. The task was well within the capabilities of Nick Marsden and Martin Williams, both men having demonstrated an ability to clear the ropes this season.
Mawdesley were all out for 137 to hand Thornton a victory that maintained their Division Two status next year.
Mawdesley’s 2nd team fell agonisingly short of the automatic promotion places in Division Six despite a 21 run win over Charnock Richard at Rectory field. The twelve point victory was not enough to overhaul Penwortham in second who picked up two points after their game against Ingol was abandoned.
Mawdesley finished 3rd in the Division Six table despite an identical record to Penwortham, the only difference being an extra 2 bowling points.