AN excellent performance from former skipper Gareth Boys could not save Ellesmere Port from going down to defeat at Cheshire Alliance Division One promotion rivals Sandbach on Saturday.
Boys, who has handed over the captain’s armband to Chris Gatrell, starred with the bat and the ball for the Port.
But his efforts went without reward as the third-placed hosts recorded a 54-run victory thanks in no small part to teenager Jimmy Ackerman.
Sandbach batted first and made 178-7 off their 48 overs.
Ross Kesteven (58), Jameel Kara (35no) and Paul Hampshire (34) were the only batsmen to prosper in the face of some fine bowling from Boys (5-40).
Boys also led the charge in Port’s reply.
The all-rounder top scored with 40 as the visitors – who came into the clash on the back of back-to-back victories – were bowled out for 124.
Ackerman did most of the damage, taking 6-20 from just nine overs, with Kesteven helping himself to 3-50.
Fifth-placed Port entertain Rylands on Saturday.
The Groves suffered the fifth cancellation of their Meller Braggins League season on Saturday when their basement battle at home to Cheadle Hulme Ladybridge was rained off.
The Groves remain second from bottom in Division Three going into this Saturday’s trip to Wirral.