Walling and Procter in top form in comfortable victory

Garstang  proved too good with bat and ball for BAC/EE Preston.
Garstang proved too good with bat and ball for BAC/EE Preston.

Garstang 232-6

BAC/EE Preston 80 all out

Garstang won by 152 runs

A textbook ton from captain Michael Walling and a five-wicket haul from big Jim Procter were the highlights of a comprehensive Garstang victory as they defeated BAC/EE Preston by 152 runs at The Riverside.

The day started with Walling winning the toss and asking for first use on what looked like a cracking pitch to bat on. Walling and fellow opener Curtis Morris started confidently as the pitch verdict seemed true.

They eased the scoring along, punishing the bad ball and rotating the strike well. The visitors looked dejected at the drinks break with Garstang cruising to 93 without loss.

Dropped three times, Morris was determined to make the away side pay but one big shot too many saw him depart in the 29th over having made 42 in an opening stand worth 120.

Mark Winstanley and Michael Walling picked up the pace as Garstang looked set for a big score. They added 62 in just nine overs with Walling reaching a chanceless and quite brilliant century.

Opening bowler Nikesh Modessa was re-introduced into the attack and he accounted for Winstanley, (26) before bowling Walling, as the skipper left to a standing ovation having made 110 from 127 balls featuring 13 fours and one towering six.

Birthday boy Ian Walling was promoted up the order to strike some lusty blows but Modessa had him caught behind first ball to dampen any early birthday celebrations.

Now at 192-4 with five overs still remaining, it left time for contributions from Allan Cook(9) and Alex Rawlinson (16) with Alex Kershaw (12) and Stuart Winstanley (3) the not out batsmen. All this took Garstang to 232-6 from their 45 overs. Modessa was clearly the pick of the bowling and surprisingly only bowled eight overs, yet collected 5-37. Jonny Hothersall (1-42) was the only other bowler to register a mark in the wickets column with the away side only managing one maiden.

David Steinson and John McKeever opened up for BAC/EE and found scoring increasingly difficult in the early overs as once again Ian Walling and Jim Procter bowled some immaculate lines.

Walling though, pulled up with injury and was replaced by Tyler Ibbotson who also failed to give anything away. With the run rate increasing by the over, Procter produced a “Flintoff ashes style over” to add further pressure on the visitors.

He brought wicketkeeper Winstanley up to the stumps and started with a dot ball. The second ball was edged through the slips for four runs before his third ball pinned McKeever, (19) bang in front lbw. His fourth ball was just too good for any batsmen as the unfortunate Phil McDonald was trapped lbw. Skipper Jamie Skeoch came in to face the hat trick ball with fielders swarming round the bat. Agonisingly a leading edge fell just over the field and a single was the outcome. Next ball, Steinson (9) drove only to see a gazelle like leap from Rawlinson who took an excellent catch to end a fascinating over of three wickets, five runs and a dot ball.

28-3 soon became 36-4 with Ibbotson removing the dangerous Jonty McDonald (5). Skeoch and Hothersall battled on trying to figure out some way of scoring. At drinks and with the score 60-4, Garstang were firmly in control.

The drinks brought the wicket of Hothersall (4) before the introduction of Michael Walling saw him collect the next wicket of Modessa (1). Skeoch, (27) played some nice shots but one shot too many found his edge with Walling taking a good catch at second slip.

With the end nigh, Walling (2-11) picked up the eighth wicket with a stunning one handed catch from Kershaw. Procter came back to replace Ibbotson and he had Tom Wilcock (4) caught at gully by Ian Walling before ousting last man Martin Hothersall (2) to complete a fantastic five wicket haul, yielding just 35 runs.

He was well supported by Ibbotson(3-30) and some excellent Garstang fielding to complete a fine victory.

Match Day Sponsor – TH Horn Garden Machinery.