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Ikram snatches tie for Bridgeholme

Mytholmroyd v Booth
Mytholmroyd v Booth

After going three years without a tie in the Spenser Wilson Halifax League’s Premier Division there was a second in eight days yesterday, again produced by a last-ball six.

Bridgeholme’s Ikram Mahmood got it at SBCI with a clean strike back over the header of bowler Ollie Benson to leave the scores level at 217, with the visitors’ last pair at the wicket.

It means the bottom two sides still haven’t managed a league win between them this season.

However, Bridgeholme’s long-serving batsman and groundsman Keith Hudson said it had felt like a win for his side in the circumstances.

It was a fairly unremarkable contest until the end with no bowler taking more than two wickets and no batsman scoring more than the 57 managed by Bridgeholme’s Nazakat Ali.

Lewis Firth (50), Sam Hinchliffe (48) and Chris Dalby (44) led the SBCI effort with the bat and the home side’s better fielding performance looked likely to pay dividends, with 13 required off the last over, until Mahmood’s straight six left him on 24 not out.

His last-ball maximum matched that of Warley’s James Whitworth in the tie against Sowerby St Peter’s seven days earlier.

Sowerby were involved in another thriller yesterday and suffered more disappointment, Richard Ellis’s six seeing Oxenhope over the line with their last pair at the crease.

Ben Watkins (60) and Aiden Green (79) featured in a patchy-looking Sowerby batting card but a total of 227 looked a satisfactory one, Liam Dyson taking 4-49.

The loss of four early wickets - three of them to Martin Schofield who went on to finish with 6-64 - left the visitors up against it but Joe Ousey maintained his fine form with 102 and Duncan Tetley added 47 to set up and exciting finish.

The top four sides all banked maximum points with Booth’s eclipse of Calder Valley rivals Mytholmroyd perhaps the most eye-catching result.

The visitors, seeking a hat-trick of titles, needed only two bowlers to dismiss their hosts for 68 on a Royd ground which usually produces big scores in decent conditions.

Usman Saghir took 4-32 and visiting captain Richard Laycock made it 19 wickets in three league games with 6-28.

The last six wickets went down for the addition of seven runs and Booth wrapped up a quick seven wicket win in the 19th over of their reply, Jack Earle taking all three wickets to fall.

Leaders Thornton won by 48 runs at Shelf Northowram Hedge Top.

Ben Burkill’s 57 spearheaded a solid effort from Thornton’s top six. Razwan Saghir’s 5-89 appeared to leave Thornton vulnerable, with a score of 217 on the board, but Joe Blencowe (4-17) and Greg Soames (3-41) bowled the visitors to victory.

The Thornton pair struck four times in quick succession after Dan Cole (33) and Babar Malik (42) had taken Hedge Top to a promising 80-1 to tip the scales the visitors’ way.

There were more heroics from Greg Keywood as third-placed Warley won by 143 runs at Southowram.

Keywood couldn’t quite match his 111 and seven wickets against Hedge Top three weeks earlier but Warley weren’t complaining and his 69 and six for 40 at Ashday Lane.

A 117-run opening stand between Chris Atkinson (78) and Chris Marsh (56) laid firm foundations for Keywood and James Whitworth (56 no) to lift the total to 310-4.

Luke Duckitt quickly dismissed Jason Wilkinson but Ian Hall (43) and Dean Crossley (52) took the total to 72 before Keywood made inroads and spinner Cameron van Rensberg (3-28) helped him clear up the rest with the final wicket falling on 167.

A 212-run stand between Adam Stocks (96) and Christian Silkstone (136), who came together at 23-2, helped fourth-placed Triangle crush visitors Copley by 210 runs.

Triangle amassed 389-7 and Copley replied with 179, Oliver Thorpe, Matthew Rowles, Mohammed Seraj and William Rushton all making it into the 30s.

Premier Division: *Mytholmroyd 66 (Ric Laycock 6-28, Saghir 4-32), Booth 72-3: pts 0-12. Thornton 217 (Burkill 57, Saghir 5-89), *Shelf Northowram HT 169 (Malik 42, Blencowe 4-17): pts 12-5. Warley 304-4 (Atkinson 78, Keywood 69, Whitworth 56*, Marsh 56), *Southowram 167 (Crossley 52, Hall 43, Keywood 6-40): pts 12-3. *SBCI 217-6 (Firth 50, Hinchcliife 48, Dalby 44), Bridgeholme 217-9 (Ali 57): pts 6-7. *Sowerby St Pete’s 227 (Green 79, Watkins 60, Dyson 4-49), Oxenhope 233-9 (Ousey 102, D Tetley 47, Schofield 6-64): pts 5-12. *Triangle 389-7 (Silkstone 136, Stocks 96), Copley 179: pts 12-4.