East Bierley seal win to pull clear of danger

Awais Ejaz claimed 3-33 to help East Bierley dismiss Scholes for 125 on their way to an emphatic nine-wicket win overScholes last Saturday.
Awais Ejaz claimed 3-33 to help East Bierley dismiss Scholes for 125 on their way to an emphatic nine-wicket win overScholes last Saturday.

East Bierley moved 18 points clear of the All Rounder Bradford League Premier Division relegation zone following a nine-wicket win over bottom side Scholes last Saturday.

Defeat leaves Scholes 44 points adrift of safety with just five games remaining, while Bierley can breathe a little easier after climbing to eighth place in the table.

Bierley’s sixth win of the season was set up by seam bowlers Tuseif Arshad (4-34) and Awais Ejaz (3-33), who found conditions to their liking as Scholes were bowled out for 123.

Irfan Amjad was the one batsman who challenged the dominance of the bowlers as he hit 10 fours in his innings of 59 but he lacked support and Scholes failed to pick up a single batting bonus point after their last nine wickets fell for 86 runs.

East Bierley romped to their target in just 19.2 overs with opener James Ford hitting 15 boundaries in an unbeaten 69 as he shared an unbroken second wicket stand of 80 with Ross Monaghan (34).

Hanging Heaton saw their lead at the top of the Premier Division cut to eight points following defeat to Pudsey Congs.

Congs started the day in the bottom two but boosted their survival hopes after dismissing Heaton for 181 as Callum Geldart and Nick Lindley played key roles. Lindley took 5-44 and Geldart (3-48), with Ismail Dawood (61) and Nick Connolly (45) the leading Heaton run scorers.

Geldart followed up by making a sparkling 91, including 11 fours, and shared a third wicket stand of 112 with Max Backhouse (37).

Despite the efforts of pacemen David Stiff (3-34) and Tom Chippendale (3-46), Congs chased down the Heaton total with 13 overs to spare.

Pudsey St Lawrence took full advantage to cut Heaton’s lead after beating Lightcliffe by nine wickets.

Opener Mark Robertshaw hit and unbeaten 100 and Callam Goldthorp made 80 in a first-wicket stand of 177 that helped St Lawrence overhaul Lightcliffe’s total of 208-9 with 11.3 overs to spare.

Robertshaw struck a six and 13 fours as the Saints recorded only their second win in six matches.

Lightcliffe, who are now embroiled in the battle near the foot of the table, saw Suleman Khan (55) and Jonathan Wilson (52no) make half centuries, but their colleagues struggled as off spinner Chris Marsden took 5-36.

Bradford & Bingley also eased their relegation fears with a 37-run win over New Farnley.

It was the home side’s first defeat in eight games and came after Bingley managed to post a challenging total of 266-9.

Opener Jack Edgar (75) and Charlie Best (42) set them on their way but it was the late hitting of Noman Ali that proved decisive.

His 64 contained four sixes and seven fours.

New Farnley had made 341-4 in their Heavy Woollen Cup final win over Hoylandswaine the previous Sunday and knew they were capable of challenging the total but it proved too big an ask.

Paceman Yassir Abbas (4-39) and spinner Ali (4-53) kept the scoring rate in check despite the efforts of in-form Lee Goddard (54), Mark Lawson (47) and Simon Lambert (37) and New Farnley were bowled out for 229.

Defeat leaves New Farnley 38 points off leaders Hanging Heaton with five games remaining.