SECOND-PLACED Wallasey narrowed the gap at the top of the Liverpool Cricket Competition’s First Division with a largely comfortable home win over Formby.
Consistent scoring took the hosts to 199-8 declared off their 55 overs, with Laurence Armstrong (4-64) claiming four wickets.
The Wallasey innings featured a number of tidy knocks from Sam Loftus (34), Mark Williams Jr (27), Graham Reid (25), Alex Eagles (25), Jack Leckey (24) and Andrew Ward (21).
Despite a half-century from opener Mark Baker (69), wickets for Chris Bourne (5-59) and Loftus (4-18) helped dismiss Formby for 150.
Maghull remain top after a thrilling win over St Helens Recs.
Batting first, an unbeaten 59 from Andrew Hewitt took Maghull to 158-9 declared, with Mark Jenkins (4-38) doing the damage for Recs with the ball.
Half-tons from Stuart Lyon (64) and John Dillon (62) kept Recs up with the run rate, with no other batsmen reaching double figures.
Paul Bower (5-35) and Chris Barry (3-24) were the pick of the Maghull bowlers, and Recs were two runs short when last man Lyon was out, caught behind, to give Maghull the win.
Rainhill remain in contention after a narrow win at Liverpool, whose Bharat Tripathi produced a superb individual display. He claimed seven for 18 off just 15.2 overs to help reduce Rainhill to 140 all out. Tripathi then smashed 85 as Liverpool came within just three runs of the target. Mohammed Qureshi (5-52) and Ziafat Ashraf (3-25) posted the best figures in the win for Rainhill.
Wigan lost ground on the leading pack after just avoiding defeat against Sefton Park. Wicketkeeper Paddy Stern smashed an unbeaten 98 off just 96 balls, as Sefton reached 235-5 declared. An exciting run chase from Wigan saw them keep up with the rate, with Adam Samouelle (54) top-scoring. The spin of Jomel Warrican (6-70) dragged the game back Sefton’s way and Wigan were left clinging on at 225-9.
Another close game took place at Southport & Birkdale with the home XI pulling off the win over Orrell Red Triangle with just four balls to spare.
David Aston (57) top-scored as S&B reached 193-8 off 67.1 overs. Andrew Mercer (3-64) and Atif Ashraf (3-33) took three wickets apiece for Orrell, but S&B skipper Chris Firth outdid them both with figures of six for 93, as Orrell were dismissed just six runs short.
Alder had a brilliant day with the bat to move away from the relegation zone. Captain Mohammed Masroor (123 not out) and Scott Aitchison (104 not out) shared a massive unbroken partnership of 237 for the third wicket as Alder posted 250-2 against Prestatyn.
Gareth Boughey hit 98 but the Welshmen were dismissed for 218.