Austin and Russell stand out in stats of Birstall’s successful promotion side

Austin and Russell stand out in stats of Birstall’s successful promotion side

THIS final cricket round-up of the 2019 season features the final averages in the All Rounder Cricket Bradford Premier League’s Championship Two and Conference.

Although Carlton were league champions by the proverbial country mile, and they not surprisingly produced some of the league’s best individual statistics for any division, there were key individual successes for runners-up Birstall.

It is difficult to recall anyone matching the final average of 119.88 that was posted by Carlton’s 95-run Kershaski John Lewis, but it was good to see Birstall’s New Zealand-born Eric Austin take second place with a century and four 50s in his 626 runs, at a very respectable average of 52.17.

Spen Victoria’s Bilal Ejaz and Sam Gateby were also among the top 10 batsmen, along with Birstall’s Brad Lay, and although Josh Haynes finished in 22nd place, his 600+ runs undoubtedly played a huge part in his side’s success and his bowling contribution demonstrated just how crucial his all-round performances were.

He actually finished in third place, with 44 wickets at 12.07, but it was team mate James Russell who took the honours in this division. 

Having moved from neighbours Gomersal at the start of the season, left-arm paceman Russell went on to show what a great acquisition he had been.

With 52 wickets at 8.88 apiece, Russell topped the divisional averages and Saif Ur Rehman’s 31, at 13.26, ensured the Leeds Road side had three bowlers in the top six.

In the Conference, it is interesting to note that while both Crossbank Methodists and Heckmondwike and Carlinghow occupied the last two places in the entire League, they both had a player in the final averages.

Paul Cooper has been a vital part of the Heckmondwike and Carlinghow club, both on and off the field, but, with one century and one 50, only three players from runners-up Great Preston finished above him. 

In fact, he even managed to finish above one-time Yorkshire Academy batsman Tabassum Bhatti from Windhill.

Bottom club Crossbank managed to record just three wins in a dismal season overall, but in Imran Patel they did have the division’s fourth most effective bowler with 36 wickets at 12.33.

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