Birstall look to bounce back against Ossett

Birstall are facing a tough task at unbeaten Ossett in the Central Yorkshire League Premier Division tomorrow (Sat) after losing their own unbeaten record with a 23-run defeat at the hands of Wrenthorpe in their last game.

Veteran Paul Blakeley may have made more comebacks than Sinatra, without sounding quite as good in the shower, but Birstall’s former Shropshire ‘A’ list paceman is still turning his arm over with great effect, despite celebrating his 51st birthday this week.

He took 2-33 in 15 overs against Wrenthorpe, bowling alongside spinner Umar Rehman (4-36 in 15), and though Craig Wood went for seven an over but he did collect three wickets to leave Wrenthorpe on 191-9 in their 50 overs.

That was always a tall order for the Leeds Road side, and the loss of their first six wickets for 71 scarcely helped but Wasim Nazir hit 44 in 54 balls to put them back in the game and in the end they fell 24 runs short of victory with 17 balls remaining.

In contrast, Ossett go into tomorrow’s game in prime form, having won three games out of three played to date with two having been abandoned.

At Hunslet Nelson prolific opener Shoaib Latif hit 117 out of 220-7 to take his season’s tally past the 300-mark already, then three wickets apiece for Rohan and Gurman Randhawa bowled out the home side for just 155.

Methley, who lead Ossett by two points, are at home to Wrenthorpe tomorrow while bottom club Mirfield Parish Cavaliers entertain Hunslet Nelson still looking for a first win while Batley go to third placed Townville.

In the Championship Liversedge go to winless Caribbean hoping to build on last week’s 12-run win over Azaad, at Roberttown Lane, when veteran Paul Marlow (50), Graeme Winn (4-42) and Simon Kaye (3-23) contibuted hugely to their success.

Unbeaten Hopton Mills go to East Ardsley while in Division One Crossbank Methodists are still looking for their first CYL victory when they go to Adwalton, and Mirfield are home to Great Preston.

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