BY STEVE MCHUGH: THE result didn’t really matter and it would be hasty to put too much store behind it.
But there were plus points in the performance of a mainly Heywood second team in a defeat of their youthful Middleton counterparts in the first pre-season outing of the season at Crimble.
The bald facts are that Heywood made 152 from a ball short of their allotted 40 overs, then the visitors replied with 76 all out.
Jacob Kaye, who made 19, and Mikey Witts, 14, shared a first wicket stand of 52 for Heywood, then Matt Hood chipped in with 12.
Yet the only other home batsmen to reach double figures against probing young Middleton spin bowling was Simon Dawson, who injected some much-needed energy with a typically ebullient 46.
Dawson also made his mark with the ball, taking two wickets as the visitors’ top order was decimated by losing three wickets for just four runs.
His new ball partner Cav Hilton also caught the eye with a controlled spell of swing bowling to end with figures of 3-10 from his six overs.
From there on Middleton were left with a thankless task and lost wickets at regular intervals.
And Sam Byrne reserved the best for last by claiming the final four victims for just four runs with his off-spin.
J Kaye b Amjad 19
M Witts c J Tierney b Naser 14
M Hood c Foden b Amjad 12
R Bennett b J Tierney 2
S Dawson b Khokhar 46
S Evans b Foden 4
L Grogan b Holland 9
S Byrne c Amjad b Foden 0
M Grogan b Foden 1
L Clarkson run out 8
C Hilton not out 1
Total (for 10 wkts, 39.5 overs) 152
Fall of wickets: 1-52, 2-65, 3-75, 4-75, 5-82, 6-117, 7-118, 8-136, 9-144, 10-152
Bowling: A Holland 8-2-24-1, T Khokhar 7-1-37-1, A Amjad 8-1-22-2, I Naser 6-0-23-1, J Tierney 2-1-4-1, P Foden 6.5-0-24-3, R Baxter 2-0-11-0
M Roberts c Witts b Dawson 0
R Tierney lbw b Dawson 8
J Tierney c Witts b Hilton 1
R Baxter c Dawson b Hilton 0
L Le Carpentier c Dawson b Hilton 12
P Foden c Hilton b L Grogan 6
A Ahmed not out 21
A Holland c Dawson b Byrne 16
T Khokhar c M Grogan b Byrne 1
I Naser lbw b Byrne 0
T Astley c and b Byrne 1
Total (10 wkts, 29.3 overs) 76
Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-4, 3-4, 4-18, 5-32, 6-38, 7-61, 8-68, 9-68, 10-76
Bowling: S Dawson 4-0-20-2, C Hilton 6-1-10-3, L Grogan 5-2-5-1, M Grogan 5-2-7-0, L Clarkson 6-0-27-0, S Byrne 3.3-0-4-4
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