Lancs aim to make a flying start at Heysham

LANCASHIRE face Durham in the opening Daily Telegraph Northern Counties League match at Heysham on Saturday with skipper Paul Williams confident his side will get off to a flying start despite the loss of several key players.

Paul Williams 2

PAUL WILLIAMS

“Sean Blinkhorn and Joey Lamb have turned professional, Henry Tomlinson and Mike Howard are at university, Michael Hunt has fractured his shoulder and Jonathan Hurst is working,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sean Towndrow has completed his fourth of six chemotherapy treatments for cancer. The news is looking positive so far and he is hoping to be competing again later this season.

England player Paul Kinnear will help strengthen the side which contains a mixture of youth and experience and includes reinstated amateur Sean Doherty who will join forces with his younger brother Ciaran in the foursomes.

“He’s very keen to get back to playing with us,” said Williams, embarking on his fourth year at the helm.

“All told we have a good mixture of experienced players and a few young ones such as Reece Cranfield, who won two scratch events last year.”

Durham won’t be a pushover with Lancashire edging home by two points at Bishop Auckland last season.

“I wouldn’t take anything for granted in this league,” added Williams who has guided the Red Rose men to two English Championship and three Northern Counties League titles in four years,

FOURSOMES: Paul Kinnear (Formby) & John Carroll (Huyton & Prescot) v Richard Aisbitt (Brancepeth Castle) & James Glenn (Brancepeth Castle); Ian Kenwright (Haydock Park) & Richie Blundell (Hillside) v Rhys Thompson (Boldon) & Chris Handy (South Moor); Ciaran Doherty (Bury) & Sean Doherty (Bury) v Gavin Nesbit (Boldon) & Martin McCririck (South Shields); Joe Brice (Manchester) & Jack Shelley (Formby) v Jamie Birkbeck (Bishop Auckland) & Jason McGuire (Heworth);  Paul McFerran (Warrington) & James Rooney (West Lancs) v Stuart Brown (Castle Eden) & John Kennedy (Consett); Curtis Clarkin (Nelson) & Reece Cranfield (Wigan) v Sam Robinson (Tyneside) & James Wilson (Tyneside).

SINGLES: Kinnear v Aisbitt; Kenwright v Glenn; Blundell v Thompson; Carroll v Handy; C Doherty v Nesbit; Brice v McCririck; Rooney v Birkbeck; Shelly v McGuire; Clarkin v Brown; S Doherty v Kennedy; McFerran v Robinson; Cranfield v Wilson.

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