KENDAL’S title aspirations were all but shot down as they were defeated by the narrowest of margins in their final home game of the season against Lancaster.
Kendal must get a 15-point victory at St Annes on Saturday and hope that Fleetwood, Barrow and Leyland all lose their matches if they want to clinch the Northern Premier League title.
Having been put in to bat, Nick Phillips was first to be dismissed for the Shap Road side when he snicked a ball from Matthew Liver to former Kendal man Jamie Heywood at slip for 10.
Three balls later and Donovan Du Plessis was caught by Scott Sparks off Liver to leave Kendal 16-2.
Nick Lewthwaite was also out for a three-ball duck in the 10th over after he was caught by Liam Moffat on the onside again off Liver, who went on to claim 5-44.
With Kendal struggling Terry Hunte hit a quickfire 13 but the West Indian was unable to save the innings when he was caught in the same place by Liam Moffat off Liver as Kendal went down to 37-4.
Jack White, batting at number two, was solid throughout the innings on his way to an unbeaten 69, and he put a partnership of 54 with sub-pro Sam Sweeney before the 22-year-old was out for 31.
Darren Braithwaite scored a respectable 28 to put on a 49-run partnership with White as Kendal bolstered their score to 140-6 before he was caught by Tom Williamson off Liam Moffat.
Three runs from Paul Dodds and 11 not out by captain Chris Miller meant that the Shap Road side finished their 50 overs 174-7.
Sweeney was asked to bowl first in the reply and he got off to a great start by bowling opener Alex Metcalfe for a four-ball duck to leave Lancaster 0-1.
But that brought in Lancaster pro Timycen Maruma, who struck an almighty 57 in just 35 balls including three fours and four sixes to put Lancaster on 58-2 when he was caught by Braithwaite on the
boundary off Miller.
Jamie Heywood fell in the 16th over when Stu Parkin trapped him LBW, before Stuart Hyland stumped Kieran Moffat for nine to put Lancaster 98-5.
A few maidens followed and just before the drinks break Joe Atkinson was caught by Paul Dodds off Sweeney.
Ben Simm was introduced when Tom Williamson was dismissed for three to leave Lancaster 123-7, and Simm went on to score 41 from 51 balls to fire Lancaster over the line.
Sweeney bowled 13 wides in his attempts to get Simm out, but Kendal kept chipping away at wickets.
With Lancaster needing 26 to win Sparks was bowled by Nick Lewthwaite and in the 39th over Kendal only needed one more wicket when Lewthwaite struck to get Liver out for one.
It was tense as Lancaster only needed another 14 runs to secure victory, and a huge six by Simm boosted Lancaster to 170-9 with nine overs left, chasing 175 to win.
There was an LBW shout on Liam Moffat that wasn’t given as Moffat score two runs to put Simm on strike in the 42nd over needing two runs to claim 12 points.
And they got those two runs to give Lancaster a one-wicket victory and break Kendal hearts.