Liverpool was unable to provide Lancashire with another dramatic victory of the 2011 vintage on Saturday evening when Gloucestershire's Ed Young defied a wrist injury to help his side secure the tensest of draws against Glen Chapple's team in their LV= Division Two game.
Despite the desperate striving of Lancashire's bowlers and fielders - Gloucestershire's second innings comprised 99 overs - Young and his ninth-wicket partner Graeme McCarter batted out 6.1 overs as Michael Klinger's team finished on 173 for nine with their victory target of 359 a supreme irrelevance.
The penultimate ball of the game saw McCarter caught by Chapple off Andrea Agathangelou but Liam Norwell survived the final delivery to secure the draw. The outcome was a major frustration for Chapple and his men who had gradually worked their way through the Gloucestershire batting during an exciting day's cricket at Aigburth.
In the first 6.3 overs of the day Lancashire had added 33 runs for the loss of their last three wickets to be bowled out for 270. Wayne White was eventually dismissed for 61 by McCarter, who finished with four for 95. Gloucestershire's pursuit of 359 to win the match - or more realistically, survive a minimum of 87 overs to draw the game - began badly when Chris Dent was caught behind off Kyle Hogg for five in the sixth over.
Michael Klinger and Dan Housego played out the next 16 overs with few alarms and it came as something of a surprise when skipper Klinger was snaffled at short leg by Agathangelou off Kerrigan in the over before lunch. Almost immediately after the restart Dan Housego edged Hogg to Cross and departed for 18 leaving his side on 60 for three. Most of the rest of the afternoon session was taken up with Alex Gidman and Hamish Marshall defending their stumps successfully for 29 overs against Lancashire's six-man attack.
But the Red Rose was given a fillip just before the interval when Gidman was lbw to Agathangelou's quick off-spin to give the South Africa-born Cypriot his maiden first-class wicket. Marshall and Benny Howell guided their side safely to 122 for four at tea. A further 22 runs had been added before Lancashire made two breakthroughs in successive overs. First Kerrigan, bowling from the River End, had Howell lbw for 17 and then a delivery from Chapple kept low and bowled Gareth Roderick for a duck to give the Gloucestershire wicketkeeper a pair in the match.
Craig Miles was the next to go, caught by the versatile Agathangelou at second slip for 12 and Lancashire had eleven overs to take the final three wickets. White claimed the first of these when he had Hamish Marshall caught by Ashwell Prince for 44 when the New Zealander fended a short ball to third slip to end his technically excellent 206-ball, 214-minute vigil.
McCarter was then caught by Chapple at backward short leg off Agathangelou but Norwell's nerve held for the final ball of the match. Chapple finished with two for 40, Kerrigan two for 65, Hogg two for 19 and Agathangelou two for 18. It had been as the Lancashire coach Peter Moores said "a great game of cricket".
"We'd have loved to have got one more wicket and got over the line and the way the points are structured it's a massive swing" added Moores. "We have to take it on the chin and given Gloucestershire credit because I thought they batted well and had a couple of key pertnerships which really slowed us down.
"Though the wicket turned, we didn't get quite as much out of it as we hoped."
Moores also defended Lancashire's decision not to declare on their overnight total and leave Gloucestershire all day to score 327 to win the game.
"We thought about it but we knew we'd bowl more overs at them than the minimum and we wanted to keep our attacking fields. If we'd declared overnight and bowled 99 overs at them, we'd have been asking them to score at three and a bit runs an over, that's all. By batting for six overs it meant that we could keep attacking fields all day and we backed ourselves to bowl them out in that time. But Gidman and Marshall just sat in there and kept the game calm."
Photo: Delight for Andrea Agathangelou after taking the wicket of Gloucs' Alex Gidman (c) Simon Pendrigh