WICKETS in successive deliveries tipped a see-saw battle at Macclesfield in favour of Widnes to give the visitors a winning start on their return to Cheshire County League ECB Premier Division cricket.
A low-scoring game was in the balance until Bappa Mukherjee eased Widnes' anxiety by snapping up the dangerous Moores.
Macclesfield, chasing 136 for victory after dismissing the visitors in 53 overs, had rallied from 77-8 to 119 without further loss, but then Ian Spencer pulled off a fine catch behind.
From the very next delivery, Gareth Dyson bowled Hillaby who had struck three mighty sixes in a valiant 27, as he and Moore tried to rescue their side.
Widnes eventually got home by 16 runs, giving them 22 points as encouragement before Saturday's trip to Oxton.
The Beaconsfield Road team realise the Birkenhead side could present them with an even tougher task.
The initiative at Macclesfield had swung one way and then the other.
After slumping to 26-3 - Anthony Nickson taking 3-11 in his opening seven overs - the home side recovered somewhat.
But on 49, ex-Lancashire star Steve Titchard had Buckley well caught by the returning Ibra Ali at gully.
Without a run being added, Ali trapped Hughes leg before to make it 49-5.
Once again, Macclesfield rallied. They had taken the total onto 77 when Mukherjee bowled Tundwell and Morrison was skittled by Ali.
One run later, Cutbill was snared leg before by Mukherjee and victory looked certain.
Hillaby and Moores had other ideas and they were getting dangerously close when Widnes finally finished off the job.
Widnes had got off to a flier with 16-year-old James McCoy making a quickfire 37.
He hit six sparkling fours and a six, before falling to Hillaby in the seventh over.
Hurdley had meanwhile mustered just two runs at the other end and despite a couple of early boundaries from new skipper Adam Landry, batting at three, Widnes could not sustain the momentum.
Hurdley departed in the 16th over, trapped in front after contributing four of 57 on the board.
But Landry and Titchard had taken the score onto 98 when Landry was bowled by Moores with the final ball of the 30th over.
Spencer promptly became the first victim of Landry's fellow Australian McTaggert, whose sustained accuracy and pace troubled all the Widnes batsmen. He sent down 20 overs unchanged to claim figures of 5-41.
The remainder of the visitors' innings was painstaking, but credit to Titchard (26) and Steve Walton (14no) for seeing Widnes to 135 all out.