BOOTH are the new leaders of the Towergate Halifax League after a day when they and the last two title-winning sides, Triangle and Sowerby St Peter’s, came up trumps in the Premier Division.
Booth and Sowerby both banked 12 points from wins over Warley and Jer Lane respectively while Triangle collected eight points from a trip to Blackley.
There was frustration for other teams as the games between Southowram and Thornton, Copley and Bradshaw and Sowerby Bridge and SBCI were washed out and the sides had to settle for two points each.
Not for the first time Richard Laycock was the hero for Booth, who went above SBCI with a three-wicket win at Warley.
Laycock and home all-rounder Michael Midwood did their best to dominate the contest.
Midwood top scored with 62 but Laycock took seven for 101 to dismiss the hosts for 159.
Ex-Elland player Midwood followed up with four for 30, reducing Booth to 95 for five, but Laycock’s unbeaten 51 clinched maximum points for the visitors.
Triangle remain third after picking up eight points with a three-wicket win at Blackley.
Freddie Fox (38) and Jon Stenson (55) took the early honours for Blackley but Triangle vice-captain Dave Turner dismissed both of them on the way to figures of six for 40.
Blackley finished on 162 for nine and that failure to take the last wicket ultimaitely cost the visitors four points.
Triangle didn’t have things all their own way in the second half, Bilal Sheraz and Paul Dowle taking three wickets each. However, Gary Rodger’s 59 not out settled matters after opener Dan Crosland had made 52.
Sowerby were 28-run winners at home to Jer Lane and jumped up to fourth in the table.
A 97-run second wicket stand between Ryan Brook (66) and young Luke Bridges (56) laid the foundations for a total of 213 for six, Nabil Khan (five for 50) spearheading the visitors’ effort with the ball.
Nasir Chowdrey (35), Jordan Laban (43) and Jonny Lister (35) put Lane in a decent position at 108 for two but the rest of the batting flopped with the exception of Mick Hustler (34 no) as Dan Syme took four for 52.
POINTS: Booth 89, SBCI 83, Triangle 80, Sowerby SP 72, Bradshaw 70, Sowerby Bridge 70, Thornton 69, Warley 63, Jer Lane 56, Copley 55, Blackley 51, Southowram 37.
Northowram Hedge Top moved nearer inactive leaders Mytholmroyd in Division One with a six-wicket home win over Queensbury.
The match looked in the balance when the Rams were 40 for four in reply to Queensbury’s 189 for four off 37 overs but an unbroken 155-run stand between man of the moment Chris Metcalf and wicketkeeper Chris Conroy (52 no) was decisive.
Metcalfe continued his string of big scores since returning to the club with 108 not out, hitting six sixes, while Conroy had a 10-boundary 52.
Earlier, Tom Watson had top scored with an unbeaten 54 in a solid effort from Queensbury’s top order, reaching his half-century with six over mid-wicket.
Northowram drew level with second-placed Oxenhope, who took three points from a six-wicket defeat at home to Clayton.
After strenuous efforts from the groundstaff, Clayton took full advantage of helpful bowling conditions to reduce the home side to 53 for six. Joel Metcalfe showed the way, finishing with six for 49 after being held up by Josh Tetley, who rescued his side with an excellent 70 before being stumped late on.
Oxenhope finished on 148 for nine and although Ben Addison struck three blows with the ball for the home side, Jason Slator hit a match-winning 76 not out for Clayton.
He displayed solid defence and then aggressive hitting towards the end as black cloud circled overhead.
The Old Crossleyans versus Low Moor and Greetland versus Mytholmroyd matches were called off.
POINTS: Mytholmroyd 86, Oxenhope 71, Northowram HT 71, Old Crossleyans 62, Clayton 62, Queensbury 49, Greetland 37, Low Moor 36.
Denholme Clough’s efforts to get their pitch fit for the visit of Stones in Division Two backfired when they were bowled out for 22.
Ther Ripponden side batted first, Dave Mobbs top scored with 55 in a total of 189 for nine after they had been 142 for two.
However, that proved more than enough as Ben Watkins (six for 13) and Joe Ackroyd (four for nine) left the home batting in tatters.
It took the pair 23 overs to dismiss Clough, six home batsmen failing to trouble the scorers.
Outlane extended their lead with an 86-run win over Augustinians at Laund Hill.
Adam Davies (59) helped the visitors to 181 for eight and the home side then had no answer to Anwar Shokat, who took seven for 34.
Nandankar saved the hosts from humiliation with 61 to add to his earlier three for 23.
Stainland made 172 for seven at home to Old Town, who were all out for 163, while the Shelf versus Bridgeholme contest was washed out.
Halifax League press officer Geoff Wright has appealed for cricket followers to offer support to the clubs hit by flooding on Friday evening.
Bridgeholme, Copley and Sowerby Bridge are among the grounds particularly badly affected and Wright said any physical or monetary help to repair damage would be gratefully appreciated.
Wright said: “When the waters subside there is likely to be sand, silt and stones left on the pitches and clubs will need help clearing up to ensure they can play again sooner rather than later.”
He said individuals who could help should contact the clubs.