Accrington Cricket Club

Accrington 173, Rishton 74
Worsley Cup Semi Final Sunday 5th July 1970

Accrington Worsley Cup Winners 1970
Accrington Worsley Cup Winners 1970

Accrington reached the Worsley Cup Final by beating Rishton by 99 runs at Thorneyholme Road. Accrington batted first and totalled 173 with professional Bruce Francis once again top scoring with 93, including eight fours and a six. Things didn't look promising at the halfway point for the home side with just 50 runs on the board, but Francis who had a life at 30 when he was dropped off Ronnie Smith with the score on 45, began to open up. The powerful Australian was particularly severe on his opposite number Ken Higgs with the former England paceman conceding 84 runs in 14 overs. Smith removed opener Geoff Hayhurst for 12 at 61. Bob Ratcliffe made 30 before falling to Smith (5-64) at 116. Francis and Russ Cuddihy put on 50 in just 4.2 overs with both men hitting huge sixes into Highams before the amateur fell to Smith for 17 at 158. Francis' fine innings ended when he top edged Smith to wicketkeeper Eric Whalley. The Australian faced 128 balls in hitting eight fours and a six during his 143 minutes innings. The rest of the batsmen fell in alarming fashion with Brian Rutter failing to score and Alan Richardson, Lindon Dewhurst, skipper Eddie Robinson and Ian Birtwistle managing just a single apiece. Terry Neville made 8 before being run out and Accrington were dismissed for 173 with 12 balls remaining. Bob Coar also took 3-16 for Rishton. Rishton were soon in trouble with David Chew run out by Rutter in the first over without scoring. Alan Worsick held a return catch off Eric Nuttall (11) at 28 with Keith Kennedy(16) finding the safe hands of Ratcliffe on the boundary, one run later. At the halfway point Rishton were struggling on 35-3. Billy Wilkinson was run out for 9 at 49 and 2 runs later John Marsden was trapped in front by Worsick's faster ball for 14. Robinson removed Higgs (5) but the introduction of Birtwistle spelled the end for Rishton with the new bowler picking up skipper Whalley (10), Stuart Ormerod (2) and Smith (2) in conceding just one run in 17 balls. Worsick added the scalp of Peter Whelan (2) to his haul to finish with 4-27 as Rishton were bowled out for a disappointing 74 in the 34th over. Scorecard

If you have any memories of 1970 please email Nigel Stockley