Josh Hutchinson was very much the hero - or villain depending on your view point - in surely one of the most dramatic ties in the 132-year history of the Halifax Parish Cup yesterday.
His Thornton side joined Booth, Illingworth and Shelf Northowram Hedge Top in the last four of this season’s competition after losing fewer wickets than hosts Triangle, who also scored 370 at Grassy Bottom.
Hutchinson, one of the most destructive batsmen in the Halifax League, scored 215 not out to seemingly put Thornton in the driving seat.
However, Nathan Madden (106), Dan Crosland (85), Kurtis Whippey (82) and Carl Fletcher (47) led Triangle’s determined response and the home side scored 18 off the penultimate over to leave themselves requiring just four more off the final over bowled by Hutchinson.
The scores were level with two balls left and Triangle could have played them out and gone through, having lost seven wickets to Thornton’s eight.
However, Jack Gledhill was caught behind off the penultimate ball.
Mark Uttley was then run out backing up out of his ground at the non-striker’s end as Hutchinson ran in for the final delivery.
When Hutchinson finally bowled the last ball Zak Rushton, on strike, was run out trying to get a winning single.
The outcome brought the Uttley dismissal, known as a “Mankad” after the Indian bowler of the same name who ran out Australia batsman Bill Brown in 1947, into sharp focus.
It is perfectly legal but considered by some as against the spirit of cricket.
Halifax League press officer Paul Whiteley comfirmed that there was already one disciplinary report to assess in the wake of yesterday’s game.
Long-serving Triangle member John Moore said Uttley’s run out by Hutchinson had “left a lot of ill feeling.”
The dramatic finale at Triangle rather overshadowed the tie of the round at Booth, where the champions knocked out holders Warley by 41 runs.
Booth avenged a defeat at the same stage last year thanks to a superb all-round display from Richard Laycock.
The skipper made 78 not out off 61 balls to help his side to 215-8 after they had been wobbling at 148-7. Older brother Robert made 41 and spinner Matthew Steers took 4-48.
Warley made a cautious start in reply and Richard Laycock then took 4-30 as the visitors tried to step up the pace. Warley were limited to 174-8 with Chris and Ben Atkinson, Cameron Van Rensberg and Matthew Whitworth all making it into the 30s.
It was the end of the road for the two non-Premier sides, Luddenden Foot and Mount.
Second Division Foot finally bit off more than they could chew after earlier putting out Sowerby St Peter’s and Copley.
Visitors Shelf Northowram made 247 with Raz Saghir hitting 86 and receiving solid backing from Keir Litjens (32), skipper Ollie Hemingway (35) and Chris Horsfall (42).
Saghir completed an excellent afternoon’s work with 4-30 as Foot were all out for 182 with Isaac Baldwin (56) and Jacob Whitehouse (36) temporarily raising home hopes with a 75-run stand after the High Lea Green side had been 0-2.
There was no giant killing act at the Field of Dreams as First Division Mount were comfortably beaten by Premier Division leaders Illingworth.
The Batley side slumped to 69-4 after an opening stand of 53 and Mahmad Kayat’s cultured 37 was only enough to help them to 155 as Luke Brooksby (3-19) and Stephen Cook (3-37) struck.
Visiting openers Matty Smith (68) and Callum Cook (65 not out) put on 131 and Illingworth wrapped up a nine-wicket win in the 23rd over to earn their first Parish Cup semi-final since their return to the league in 2017.
In the Crossley Shield, Illingworth seconds couldn’t emulate the club’s senior side. The holders crashed out with a 10-wicket defeat at Sowerby after being all out for 68.
Booth, Mount and Thornton are the other sides who went through and the draws will take place at Booth on Wednesday (8.0).
Parish Cup: *Booth 215-8, Warley 174-8; Shelf Northowram Hedge Top 247 all out, *Luddenden Foot 182 all out; *Mount 155 all out, Illingworth St Mary’s 156-1; Thornton 370-8, Triangle 370 all out Thornton through on fewer wickets lost).
Crossley Shield: *Clayton 122 all out, Booth 123-0; Mount 213-5 *SBCI 187 all out; Illingworth St Mary’s 68 all out, *Sowerby St Peters 72-0; Luddenden Foot 140 all out, *Thornton 141-0.