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Cricket: Promoted Chester County Officers make solid start to season

CHESTER County Officers were pleased with their performance as they began life in Division One of the TACS Partnership Cheshire League with a draw at Runcorn.

CHESTER County Officers were pleased with their performance as they began life in Division One of the TACS Partnership Cheshire League with a draw at Runcorn.

Losing the toss, Chester were asked to bat and the opening pair of Mike Rowlands and Stuart Putson saw off the new bowlers well. They put on a great stand of 86 before Rowlands (35) was trapped LBW.

Putson and Ian Rule continued to build the innings until Rule went for 17. Further wickets fell, including that of Putson for a magnificent 92, but Chester managed a respectable 192-6.

After tea Chester knew they would have to get an early breakthrough. Steve Johnson (2-35) and Graham Dodd (1-36) bowled well once they got used to the slope on the Runcorn ground. But it was Rowlands who made regular breakthroughs, taking 4 -40 as Runcorn finished on 165-7.

OAKMERE began their campaign with a 30-run loss against Hale Barns. Chasing Barns' opening score of 174-6, Oakmere made a solid start thanks mainly to Paul Yearsley (41). However, they were bowled out for 142 with the draw in sight. Earlier Mike Cushion (2-30) had led the Oakmere attack.

Elsewhere, relegated MALPAS (120-2) won at Prestbury (118).

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