Colne finally achieved their first win of the season, but they had the spectators on the edge of their seats before it was done.
Daneyal Qasim hit the winning boundary, clubbing the ball towards the Grange over mid-on to clinch a one-wicket victory over Rishton on Sunday.
Matthew Walker won the toss for Colne and put Rishton into bat.
Unusually, professional Shadley van Schalkwyk was not called upon to open the bowling, and Qasim from the Bowling Green end and Wallbank from the Grange end put an iron restraint on the Rishton scoring.
Qasim took 1-18 from his 7 overs, and Wallbank 0-14 from 10.
Adam Holt confidently caught a skyer off his own bowling, and half way through the innings Rishton were only 48-2, with professional Daniel Salpietro just 20 not out from 25 overs.
Rishton did eventually push the score along to 151-6, mostly thanks to Craig Smith (37 not out).
Salpietro made 40, splendidly stumped by Tillotson off Walker in the 36th over.
Colne conceded just 16 extras in 50 overs, which with the modern leg-side wide rule is a tribute to how accurate the
Rishton’s bowlers could not match that accuracy. They took early wickets, and Colne at 37-4 looked to be struggling.
But van Schalkwyk was still in, and a succession of partnerships took Colne towards
the target of 152
The fifth wicket was worth 22, with Akram (11) supporting the pro.
The vital sixth wicket put on 49, with Alex White (13) batting confidently and well, always looking to have plenty of time to play his shots, and sensibly pushing the singles.
The seventh wicket put on 12 with Adam Holt (9), the eighth 21 with Walker (6), and the ninth seven with Qasim at the other end.
The task of scoring the other runs wasn’t reserved solely for the pro, with extras contributing a crucial 35, mostly wides and byes.
Then, with Colne four runs from victory, van Schalkwyk got a leading edge to Salpietro’s slow bowling and gave a return catch for 48.
It was an unfortunate end to a determined innings, and he would have deserved the honour of making the winning hit.
But last man Wallbank survived the rest of the pro’s over; and off the fifth ball of the next over, Qasim’s boundary gave Colne the longed-for victory.
Colne are at Lowerhouse tomorrow and at Nelson on Sunday in the derby.