Hopton edge out Liversedge to go second

Birstall's Umar Rehman in action.
Birstall's Umar Rehman in action.

The top three sides in the Central Yorkshire League Championship are separated by just a single point as the season approaches halfway.

Hopton Mills moved up to third and are level on 37 points with Oulton and just one behind leaders Azaad.

Hopton were involved in a tense tussle against Liversedge last week, which they edged by four wickets.

Liversedge posted 218-8 thanks largely to a 93-run opening wicket stand between captain Graeme Winn (64) and Alan Sumner (45).

Zach Wood bolstered the Liversedge total with a brisk 26 not out from 13 balls, while Bradley Drake (3-68) was pick of the Hopton bowlers.

Simon Kay (4-70) helped reduce Hopton to 65-4 in reply, despite the efforts of Chris Scott (58) and Neil Browne (27).

However, Stephen Bland timed the Hopton run chase to perfection as he finished on 84 not out, from 94 balls, as they won with just three balls to spare.

Azaad moved back to the top of the table after Imran Mehboob hit 111 not out as they successfully chased down east Ardsley’s total of 243-6 with three balls remaining, while Oulton edged past Caribbean’s 131 all out to win by three wickets and move second.

Crossbank Methodists slipped to a nine-wicket defeat to Division One promotion chasers Great Preston.

Alan Firth (37), James Lord (26) and James Mastin (26no) were Crossbank’s leading run scorers as they were restricted to 170-7 before Great Preston eased to victory with Matthew King (81no) and James Marston (59no) sharing an unbroken 127-run stand for the second wicket.