Lancs go top after beating Northumberland

LANCASHIRE kept alive their hopes of a third successive Daily Telegraph Northern Counties League title when they defeated Northumberland 12.5 – 5.5 at Lancaster.

At one stage the outcome was in the balance as their opponents, a point down after the foursomes, gained the ascendancy early in the singles by winning two of the opening three matches.

But the Red Rose men asserted their authority, claiming the next eight ties to put the issue beyond doubt and move to the top of the table.

There were comprehensive victories for newly-crowned county champion Ian Kenwright and Sean Blinkhorn, who both prevailed 6&5, and host club players Jack Clarkson and Adam Stone who made the most of home advantage.

Elsewhere, Cheshire were beaten 11-7 by Yorkshire at Ilkley as Cumbria overcame bottom side Durham 12-6 at Ulverston.

FOURSOMES: John Carroll (Huyton & Prescot) & Sean Blinkhorn (S&A) halved with Phil Ridden (City of Newcastle) & Craig Penny (Newbiggin); Ian Kenwright (Haydock Park) & Paul McFerran (Warrington) lost to Jake Storey (Alnmouth) & Andrew Minnikin 3&1 (Northumberland);Ciaran Doherty (Bury) & Jack Clarkson (Lancaster) bt  Alex Dixon (City of Newcastle) & Russell Hayhoe (Ponteland) 2h; Jonathan Hurst (Pleasington) & Curtis Clarkin (Nelson) lost to  Mark Wharton (Newcastle United) & Kris Wylam (Newcastle United) 3&2;  Richie Blundell (Hillside) & Adam Stone (Lancaster) bt Tony Waller (Morpeth) & Graham Forrest (Northumberland) 5&4; Joey Lamb (Wilpshire) & Michael Hunt (Pleasington) bt Paul Caldicott (Northumberland) & Jonny Lynn (Arcot Hall) 3&1. Foursomes score: Lancs 3.5 Northumberland 2.5.

SINGLES: Kenwright bt Ridden 6&5; Carroll lost to Penny 1h;  Doherty lost to Storey 3&2; Hurst bt Minnikin 2h; Blinkhorn bt Dixon 6&5; Clarkson Hayhoe 5&4; Stone bt Wharton 1h; Lamb v Wylam 2&1; Blundell bt Waller 4&3; McFerran bt Forrest 4&3; Clarkin bt Caldicott 1h; Hunt lost to Lynn 2h. Singles score: Lancashire 9 Northumberland 3

NORTHERN COUNTIES LEAGUE

P             W            D             L              F              A             Pts

Lancashire                           3              2              1              0              31.5        22.5        5

Yorkshire                             3              2              1              0              29.5        24.5        5

Cheshire                              3              1              1              1              31           23           3

Cumbria                               3              1              1              1              29.5        24.5        3

Northumberland                    3              1              0              2              20            34           2

Durham                                3              0              0              3              21.5        32.5        0

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