Cheshire continued their successful season by easily beating Lancashire Cricket Board in the first round of the 50 over Cheltenham and Gloucester Trophy 2002 Competition at Chester Boughton Hall.
Lancs CB won the toss and ejected to bat on a perfect summer's morning. The wicket was hard and true and the outfield fast, but Cheshire's opening attack of Charlie Lamb (Bramhall) and Stuart Eaton (Alderley Edge) gave little away, the scoring rate barely exceeding two per over.
The pressure told as Lancs tried to push on, but skipper Neil Cross kept Lamb on for his full 10 overs and he responded brilliantly having Graeme Knowles and Mark Lomas caught behind by Chester Boughton Hall's Steve Ogilby. Eaton had Stephen Dearden caught in the gully and with David Snellgrove being run out, the innings was in trouble at 44 for 4 after 18 overs.
Roland Horridge, Lancs CB's Captain, tried to build a challenging total, but his young colleagues found the going tough. Jason Whittaker (Oulton Park) took over where Lamb left off taking 3 for 18 in 8.2 overs in another good effort for Cheshire, and the innings closed in the 47th over at 128 with Horridge 27 not out.
Lancs CB took the field full of youthful optimism. This was immediately blown away. Their first over went for 12, it was 21 after 2 overs and 29 after 3. Paddy McKeown started the onslaught with boundaries driven through extra cover, straight and to mid-wicket. Paul Bryson caught the mood with lofted square cuts and neat deflections. The shell-shocked fielders went slightly deeper, but this gave Cheshire the opportunity to pinch quick singles. However, in the 8th over with the score at 49, a 'yes/no' incident left McKeown stranded and he was run out for 30. Andrew Hall went for I, touching an away swinger to the keeper, and this brought Richard Hignett to the wicket.
In typical Hignett style, he blasted the bowling to all corners, scoring 54 not out as he and Bryson added 81 in twelve overs to leave Cheshire winners in the 20th over by 8 wickets, Bryson 31 not out.
Cheshire now play Cornwall at Toft in the second round on Thursday 13th September.
They have a score to settle with Cornwall as they lost to them in the second round of this year's competition back in May.

MATCH RESUL T Cheshire beat Lancashire CB by eight wickets.
LANCASHIRE CB 128 all out (C Lamb 2 for 16 in 10 overs) (J Whittaker 3 for 18)
CHESHIRE 131-2 (R.G.Hignett 54 not out)