PRESTWICH bounced back from a shock league defeat at bottom club Stretford to beat Farnworth Social Circle in the National Knockout Cup on Sunday.
The batting performance against the Bolton League leaders was much improved as the Heys side chased down a target of 171 to progress.
Farnworth were in early trouble at 12-4, but a stirring partnership of 119 between skipper David Tonge (64) and Leach (42) dragged them back off the floor.
Andy Bradley, Tom Scott and Carl Hey all grabbed two wickets each.
In reply, Prestwich made an inauspicious start, losing Hey and Gibson with just four on the board.
But James Wharmby and Sam Holden wrestled the innings round, with Holden striking a fluent 45 before he was run out.
It didn’t stop the momentum as Wharmby chalked up an excellent 69 not out, while Ali Raza cracked a run-a-ball unbeaten 35 to secure success with 13 overs to spare.
It was in stark contrast to 24 hours earlier when Prestwich were on the wrong end of an upset at Stretford as the hosts won for the first time in seven attempts in the Lancashire County League.
South African Kyle Morrison turned on the style for the home side, following up a half century with a mighty 6-86 haul from 22 overs of pace bowling.
With Rajesaeker slamming 82 in the home side’s total of 208, Prestwich’s reply spluttered to a halt 55 runs shy of the target.
And yet it had all started so promisingly for the Heys side when Ryan Stanbury bowled Stretford opener Ghani with the second ball of the match.
However, Morrison decided attack was the best form of defence and soon got the home scoreboard ticking over, and reached his 50 from 50 balls.
He was joined by Rajesaeker for an 82-run stand for the third wicket, assisted by a couple of spills in the field.
Stanbury snapped up Morrison, caught by wicketkeeper Wharmby for a hard-hitting 61, but Stretford skipper Zafor continued the run flow with a steady knock of 42.
Only in the latter part of the innings did Prestwich’s fielding prowess shine through as Scott took a remarkable catch on the long-on boundary to claim Butt’s wicket, catching it as he fell over the boundary, before throwing it in the air to grasp it again once his feet were back in front of the boundary rope.
Lewis Jarvis also took a fine stretching catch at long-off to dismiss Zafor as a late rally of wickets gave skipper Bradley a five-wicket haul.
Professional Hey and Wharmby were back in the pavilion with 15 on the board, but Tom Gibson and Holden took the score comfortably to 54 before Morrison claimed two wickets in three balls – Holden for 19 and Ali Raza for 0. Gibson had admirably knuckled down to the task, but his departure for 41 shortly after Stanbury’s dismissal for 23, left the score at 114- 6, and the innings was never able to recover.
Prestwich are back in Lancashire County League action on Saturday with a home clash against Roe Green.