ECCLESHALL CC seconds continued their strong early season form to go top of NSSCL division 3B following a comfortable victory over Crewe.
After losing the toss Eccleshall were asked to bat and were in trouble early on as a result of an excellent new-ball spell from seamer Jon Minshull.
Eccleshall fell to 33 for 3 and had a battle on their hands. Jack Boulton and Matt Buttery steadied the ship before the latter was out for 16.
Boulton grew in confidence and soon began to dominate the Crewe bowling attack and take Eccleshall towards their target of 200.
He neared a landmark century and then achieved it in style with a big six to reach 101. At that point the home side declared their innings at 207 for 8. Minshull finished with 4 for 48.
After a good start in reply and reaching 45 for 1 Crewe were undone by the spin of Dan Lakin who picked up three wickets for 25.
A collapse ensued with seam bowler Sam Buttery breaking through with a spell of 3 for 5 and then Boulton rounded off a great day for himself with two wickets for 12 runs.
Crewe fell away to finish all out 86 resulting in Eccleshall picking up 25 points with victory by 121 runs.
In division 2A, Eccleshall firsts were beaten at Kidsgrove in their latest encounter. Batting first, Eccleshall struggled against tight Kidsgrove bowling, in particular Asif Khan who took 7 for 49 for the home side. Yasser Tariq hit 33 and Cameron Sinclair 47 to steer Eccleshall to a respectable 157 all out.
In reply Eccleshall made early inroads but Richard Hagan took control of proceedings with a fine 54 not out as Kidsgrove passed their target at 160 for 5 to win and collect 20 points.