Blackley off mark in basement scrap

Crash: Tom Greenwood on his way to 80 as Blackley finall got their Premier Division campaign up and running.    Picture: Charles Round
Crash: Tom Greenwood on his way to 80 as Blackley finall got their Premier Division campaign up and running. Picture: Charles Round

THE battle of the Premier Division’s bottom two went Blackley’s way as they celebrated their first success of the campaign with a 21 run home success over Old Crossleyans.

Something had to give and it was Blackley’s batsmen who made sure they were not to be caught out as they plundered runs on a baking hot day.

Opener David Townsend missed out as he left without scoring but Craig Taylor hit 69 to get the ball rolling before Tom Greenwood made 80 and Chris Overend weighed in with a late 47 as the total climbed to a healthy 302, Richard Dixon claiming three for 72.

Crossleyans, robbed of the services of Jonny Sykes and Chris Neal, struggled in reply and were 72 for three before Jon Pearson put bat to ball on the way to a morale-boosting 71.

He and Dixon (82) made vital runs late on but the resistance was finally ended when Dan Houldin bowled Tanweer Aslam with Karl Topham earlier picking up five for 72.

Leaders Triangle were left kicking themselves after losing out by 19 runs against Warley. However, they still retained top spot after nearest challengers Thornton also went down, to Copley.

Wayne Swift (58) and Michael Midwood (54) got Warley motoring after the had lost Nolan Bottomley with 20 on the board, then Greg Keywood weighed in with a precious 46.

Even so the home side could never shake off the attentions of Carl Fletcher (three for 85) and Dave Turner, who finished with six for 60 to help limit the damage to 240.

Bottomley then made up for his failure with the bat as he helped peg Triangle back at 113 for three, Steve Senior top-scoring with 57. Bottomley finished with four for 70.

Triangle then lost their next three wickets for the addition of just 39 runs and although Liam Turner (33) attempted to spearhead a recovery, the wickets continued to fall, Wayne Swift and Greg Keywood both adding three wickets to their collections.

Richard Turner helped limit Thorntonto 205 for six, taking three for 72 to restrict the home side to 103 for five at one stage of their clash, Ollie Dunn standing firm with an unbeaten 55 as eighth man.

Copley found runs equally difficult to come by and were 60 for three but rallied well with their own late order man Scott Skinner hitting 61 not out as the target was passed with just short of two overs to spare.

Tim Helliwell and Paul Gledhill made good use of the fine weather as they helped Sowerby Bridge to a crushing 10 wicket success over Bradshaw.

Earlier Ashton Richardson (four for 34) and Roger Smith (four for 47) had helped skittle the visitors for 111, Steve Shannon top-scoring with 22.

Helliwell made an unbeaten 63 and Gledhill 37 not out as Bridge passed the target with more than half their allotted over remaining.

Not even the efforts of star slow bowler Martin Schofield could prevent his Sowerby St Peters side slipping to an 18 run defeat by Jer Lane.

Schofield could have been forgiven for thinking he had kept the visitors in check with figures of seven for 70, but Johnny Lister defied him to make 55 while a quickfire mid-order 47 from Jordan Laban ensured a reasonably competitive total of 192.

However, Sewerby were unable to cope with the twin threat of Nabil Khan and James Watson who grabbed eight wickets between them to hasten the home side’s downfall at 174, the highlight of which was a joint top score of 34 from 13-year-old Luke Bridges who, on his debut, also shared in a stand of 57 with Matt Hoyle.

Ian Sharkey’s majestic 92 was the highlight of Booth’s comprehensive 111-run success over Mytholmroyd.

Matthew Brown (50) and Rick Laycock (46) also made valuable contributions towards Booth’s total of 299 for seven, Shahid Rashid claiming three for 54.

Rick Laycock then wasted no time in seeing off Royd’s top men as the visitors found themselves on the ropes at 94 for five.

Martyn Astin hit 11 fours as he stood defiant with an unbeaten 52 but it was a lone battle and he and his side were forced to surrender on 118 for eight.