Farnworth Social Circle and Little Lever continued their strong starts to the North West Cricket League Conference Premiership campaign, while Foulridge firsts remained at the bottom after winning only one in six.

The highest score of the day last Saturday came at Victory Road where Little Lever hosted Read. After winning the toss, Little Lever elected to bat first which saw them being dismissed for 209 with Naeem Patel top-scoring with 63, followed by a quick 44 from Jack Barlow, despite Read bowler Jamie Woodall taking 6-49.

In response, Read were bowled out for 121, with Henry Higson top-scoring with 41 after Callum Hill took 4-34.

After losing in their first three matches, Astley Bridge notched their third consecutive win as they hosted Salesbury at Sharples Park. Batting first, Bridge were dismissed for 137 with captain Ady Cooper top-scoring with 44. In reply, Astley Bridge bowled Salesbury out for 127, with Callum Grantham being left stranded on 54 after Hashim Akhtar took 4-47.

The lowest score of the day came at Piggott Park as Foulridge firsts visited Social Circle. Batting first, Foulridge was dismissed for 102, with Rashid Rasheed scoring 42 after Josh French took 4-24. After being 52-5, a solid partnership between Andrew Wareing (46 not out) and David Tonge (30no) helped the hosts to their sixth win of the season, despite Shahbaz Munir taking 4-65.

Farnworth got back-to-back wins after a comfortable victory against Ribblesdale Wanderers at Bridgeman Park. Farnworth scored 205-8 off their 45 overs with Scott Mather top-scoring with 70. In reply, Ribblesdale were dismissed for 94, with only Stewart Trotter (40) getting into double figures.

The final game in the division came at the Bull Holme Oval as Burnley Belvedere seconds visited Barrowford firsts. Batting first, Barrowford were bowled out for 159, with Jonny Ormerod top-scoring with 34no after Aadil Hussain (4-33) and Tanveer Ahmed (4-38) took four wickets each. Burnley won the game by seven wickets after a fantastic captain’s knock by Ali Zar, scoring an unbeaten 79.

In the second division, Walkden remain top with 84 points despite not playing last weekend. Earby move above Barnoldswick on 80 and 79 points, respectively, after beating them by two runs. Haseeb Hanif took 4-24 and Wasique Ali 3-28 in Earby’s 103, then Hafeez Ul Wahab recorded a half-century in vain with Jason Lockley 5-46.

In fourth are Oswaldtwistle Immanuel on 77 points. Waseem Hussain (4-15) and Sean Dignan, with 3-20, helped dismiss Padiham for 100, before Dignan hit 38 in OI’s four-wicket victory.

At 67-9, Feniscowles appeared to be on the brink chasing Blackrod’s 159, Jack Southworth scoring 56 including four consecutive sixes, Khurah Mahmood 3-23. However the last pair added 90 runs (Edward Rushworth 53), leaving them agonisingly two runs short when the last wicket fell. Tony Tipping was the pick of the Blackrod bowlers with 3-15 off 12 overs.

From 70-4 Foulridge seconds collapsed to 84 all out, with Lewis Whitford (5-33) and Henry Hindle (4-17) in the wickets. Baxenden struggled initially, but Edward Tomlinson’s 46no guided them from 48-4 to a six-wicket victory.

Tharsen Thayalan and Andy Gregory shared all 10 wickets equally as Eagley were dismissed for 49. Jacob Verigo’s 3-18 helped reduce Kearsley to 29-4, but they completed their victory without losing another wicket.

Tonge made 112 losing their last four wickets for four runs, Kishan Ran taking 5-23. Lostock then recovered from 77-6 to win by three wickets.

Henry Bradford (69) and Ehtesham Ali (55) shared a partnership of 129 for Whalley, but from 194-4 Louie Farrimond’s 5-38 restricted them to 207. Mike Tomlinson hit more than half of Atherton’s runs, with 72 out of 142.

Cup semi-finals (July 7)

Ramsbottom Cup - Read v Cherry Tree, Farnworth v Ribblesdale Wanderers.

Lawrenson Cup - Tonge v Barrowford seconds, Salesbury v Foulridge firsts.