ASHTON-on-Mersey recorded a hard-fought victory against North East Cheshire to move back into the promotion places in Division One of the Cheshire Cricket League.

After a week of torrential rain which made the Poynton ground unusable, the game was switched to NE Cheshire’s second ground at Disley.

On a wicket which was always going to be challenging, Ashton were grateful to win the toss and bowl first.

NE Cheshire struggled from the start, as the ball held in the surface, preventing any expansive strokeplay.

Ashton’s medium pacers exploited the conditions well, with skipper James Marshall leading the way.

Bowling off a shortened run and at reduced pace, Marshall found the right line and length to remove three of the top four batsmen for single figures.

Ashton backed up the bowling effort in the field and some lightning work by wicketkeeper Dave Patterson saw him stump the dangerous Andrew Clarke, while some energetic fielding by Mike Roberts led to the run-out of North East’s skipper Jake Reynolds.

Some strong hitting by Danny Williams saw the score grow to 89 before the fall of the final wicket.

Marshall recorded fine and well-deserved figures of 6-31.

In reply, Ashton found batting just as challenging as the home side. The top order failed and when the fifth wicket fell with only 38 runs on the board, things looked ominous for the Ashton team.

But the excellent Peter Hatzoglou dug in to lead a gritty effort by the middle order.

With Roberts and Patterson providing solid support, Hatzoglou mixed sound defence with an ability to score off anything loose.

The winning runs came as Hatzoglou recorded an excellent half-century, taking Ashton to an important win as they closed on 90-7.

The result takes Ashton back to second place in the league and all eyes will be on the the next outing against leaders Haslington.

The Ashton second team made it a double-winning Saturday as they beat Neston at The Beets.

They totalled 180 all out (Asim Khan 53) before Neston reached 101 all out (Ollie Chow 4-21).

On Sunday the third team fell to defeat against a strong Woodley side.

After making 126 all out, Woodley reached 127-0.

But the weekend finished on a high as Ashton ladies produced a fine performance to win at Nantwich, making 108 as Neston scored 100.