Thornton beat Booth to win Parish Cup in dramatic climax

Last Sunday’s ENCO Halifax Cricket League’s 133rd Parish Cup Final, sponsored by Briggs Priestley, brought one of the closest climaxes in the long history of the competition, if not the closest, as Thornton retained the trophy against Booth by virtue of the fact that it lost two fewer wickets with the scores tied.

Wednesday, 4th August 2021, 9:53 am
Rob Laycock ended up on the losing side for Booth in the Parish Cup final

Booth batted first and two important innings came from the Laycock brothers as Robert (60) and Richard (88) were the mainstays in a total of 231-8.

Thornton’s Bradley Weatherhead had fine figures of 9-4-30-5, which were to prove vital later. The innings of the Bradford team followed a very similar pattern with brothers Josh (68) and Nikki Hutchinson leading the reply.

After the former had been dismissed Ross Parr (36) joined the fray and exactly 100 runs were required from the last ten overs. At this stage N Hutchinson found top gear and eight sixes and six fours flashed from his bat as the winning target became closer and closer. However he was caught out, having made a superb 107 runs, with seven runs still needed to overall Booth’s score.

Eventually Thomas Harrison (19 not out) and Weatherhead (2) levelled the scores with one ball to spare.

There was to be an ironic final twist as the latter, realising that Thornton had won the final by losing fewer wickets, took a mighty heave at the very last ball only to be caught!

Thornton skipper Ross Soames collected the Parish Cup and it was no surprise when Nikki Hutchinson was announced as man-of–the match closely followed, in this writer’s eyes, by Weatherhead’s performance with the ball.

Booth had a much better previous day in the Premier Division as, when leaving Bradshaw after a three-wicket win, it learnt that Copley had beaten Triangle by six wickets this reducing the leaders lead at the top to 14 points.

At the opposite end of the table wins for Blackley and SBCI saw the latter’s close neighbours, Sowerby Bridge, slip into deep relegation trouble some 16 points adrift of third bottom place.

All the top teams in the First Division won to leave the order of Sowerby St Peter’s (136 points), Luddendenfoot (123) and Great Horton PC (121) unchanged.

If runs are at the top of the viewing list then picturesque Bridgeholme in the Second Division is the place to be. There was another aggregate score of over 500 as Bilal Mahmood (155) superbly led the home team to a 95 runs win over Leymoor.

Greetland’s Tanweer Aslam (114) was the only other centurion in the league as his team retained top spot, with victory over Cullingworth.

There is an interesting Premier clash on Saturday as Mytholmroyd, who have quietly slotted into third place, visit leaders Triangle and a high-scoring match is in prospect.

At Walton Street Sowerby Bridge will be desperate to extract winning points from its visitors Bradshaw whilst Booth should keep the pressure on Triangle at home to Illingwort St Mary’s.

In the First Division both Luddendenfoot, at Clayton, and Great Horton PC travelling to Mount, will be keen to stay in touch with leaders Sowerby St Peter’s who visit Low Moor HT.

In the Second Division Greetland should restore its considerable lead at the top, as it visits Leymoor, second-placed Bradley & Colnebridge having a free date.

Southowram will be keen to return to winning ways at Outlane after its disastrous 41 all out last week on a badly rain-affected track against Queensbury.