The 2nd XI secured a winning draw on Saturday in a hard fought contest against Port Sunlight 2nd XI at the Gorse Croft on a bitterly cold, murky day.
Skipper Danny Thorburn lost the toss and was invited to bat first. Audlem lost their openers early and were struggling on 13 for 2. Toby Banfield and Thorburn then rebuilt the innings before Banfield departed for 20 leaving Audlem on 61 for 3.
There then followed the best batting of the day from Leo North and Thorburn. The pair added 74 in an excellent partnership. North played a superb, aggressive knock and found the boundary eight times. On 42, however, he made his first mistake and called Thorburn for a risky single – Thorburn sent him back – but North failed to make his ground and was run out.
Thorburn followed for an excellent 36 not long afterwards and the Audlem innings subsequently petered out from a position where a large total seemed likely. It required another brisk cameo from Lyndon Woodcock (18) to guide Audlem to maximum batting points and a score of 180 for 9.
Port Sunlight began their chase slowly but lost wickets too regularly to threaten the Audlem total initially. However, with neither side doing enough, the game started to drift towards a draw until Jonno Roberts joined Ben Nuttall with the score on 78 for 4. The pair found the boundary regularly and started to take the game away from Audlem.
At 139 for 4, 42 were required off 7 overs and the game appeared to be in the balance. Dave Parry then bowled dangerman Roberts for an aggressive 38. The tempo of the match changed and Audlem went onto the attack. Two quick wickets took the score to 141 for 7 with Audlem at that point sniffing an unlikely victory. However, Port Sunlight held out for a draw ending up on 142 for 7, with Nuttall undefeated on 51.
The star bowler for Audlem was Dave Parry who bowled 21 overs unchanged, taking 3 for 53 and Roy Wild offered valiant support with 2 for 69 off 17 overs.
Audlem gained 14 points and Port Sunlight 7 points. Tomorrow the 2nd XI travel to Wilmslow.
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