Hat-trick Hero Halkon Sets Up Win

Hat-trick Hero Halkon Sets Up Win
Middlewich 88 all out (35.3)
Sale 91-2 (17)
Sale win by 8 Wickets
An outstanding performance from Sale leg spinner Rick Halkon set up a convincing 8 wicket win over Middlewich in division one of the Vivio Cheshire County Cricket League.  Halkon took a career best 9-32, including a hat-trick, to blow away bottom of the table Middlewich.  With the other leading clubs also winning there was no change in the quest for a place in the ECB Premier League next season.
Search sponsored Sale won the toss and asked the visitors to bat first.  Leandro du Toit (16) made a fluent start before offering a simple stumping in the 6th over.
Just four more runs were added before number three Andrew Davies was pinned LBW by Halkon for 2.  Kieran Boyle was bowled for a 13 ball duck soon after to reduce Middlewich to 29-3.
Jamie Williams and captain Nick Gill began to rebuild the innings, adding 38 before Williams inexplicably hit Halkon to Ben Watkin at midwicket, who took the catch at the second attempt to send him back for 33.
Gill soon chased a wide one from Ali Barrowman and was smartly caught at gully by Jon Hall to put Middlewich in trouble at 75-5 with 20 overs remaining.
Wickets continued to fall as the dangerous Kristian Clowes edged an attempted sweep to Chris Canning for 5, Middlewich now 88-7.
Halkon then rounded off his day in the perfect way, taking a hat-trick to end the Middlewich innings without further addition to the score (see picture above by George Franks).  Halkon’s final figures of 17.3-8-32-9, eclipsed his 9-42 against Bollington in 2012.
Openers Ian Dixon and Ryan Rickelton got off to a flying start, taking 24 runs off the first three overs. The score had reached 33 when Rickelton edged Nigel Stubbs to Williams at slip for a run-a-ball 13.
Tyrone Lawrence joined Dixon at the crease, playing some expansive shots on his way to a brisk 26 before he edged behind.
With 12 needed Dixon took 14 off what would turn out to be the last over from Stephen Bliss, including a huge six over midwicket, to reach 46 not out and seal a comprehensive victory.
Sale 2nd XI’s chance of a late promotion run was probably halted by regular first teamer James Conford at Middlewich.  His unbeaten century meant Sale could only manage a losing draw, closing on 188-9 in pursuit of the home side’s 216-6.
Rob Merga (73) and Jamal Benzafar (53) continued their fine form with the bat.
The 3rd XI match against Romiley on Sunday was cancelled without a ball being bowled due to persistent rain.
Sale Silverbacks, our over 40’s side, are now one win away from clinching the NE division title.  On Wednesday they completed an 8 wicket win over Bowdon, whilst nearest rivals Cheadle Hulme lost to Urmston.
Mark Rowe, Steve Macdonald and Mark Almond all retired on 30 as Sale posted 149-2.  Ian Holland took 2-26 as Bowdon got close with 136-6.
On Wednesday the Silverbacks visit Bowdon Vale.  On Saturday the 1st XI visit Cheadle Hulme, whilst the 2nd XI welcomes Nantwich to Dane Road.  On Sunday the 3rd XI travel to Ashley.
The under 16s kept on track for the Salford YCA league title with a victory away at Radcliffe. 
Radcliffe 129/9 (20 overs)
Sale 134/3 (16.2 overs)
Radcliffe faced a suffocating opening spell from Mal Clarke (4-2-4-1) but picked up pace through their innings and looked poised to set a large total when captain Dan Osborne, enjoying an evening without keeping pads, came on to bowl the 18th over. He took 3-12 and with Tim Martin (1-5) squeezed the home team. Earlier, Joe Cannon had taken 3-19. 
Sam Battersby led the Sale reply making a fluent 50 retired. Joe Cannon made a steady 24 before Dan Osborne brought the match to a rapid conclusion with 44 from 15 balls. 
Sale Squirrels won their 5th consecutive match on Tuesday. 
Sale 296 (16 overs) - Ben Habershon 17, Arthur Tazaki 14, Brayden Ross 14 
Didsbury 277 (16 overs) - Brayden Ross 2-3, Fergus Banks 2-14. 
Sale Badgers lost narrowly to Brooklands, while the under 7s won a tight match with their Brooklands counterparts. Aswin Punnoose top-scored (17) and Taha Chaudhry took the bowling honours with 3 wickets.
The full scorecards can be found here.

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