Phil Carter’s decision to stand down from first team cricket at Gomersal to help bring on a talented group of young second team players and keep a few old heads in check is paying rich dividends.
Carter was at the crease in his Second Division side’s Priestley Shield final at Lightcliffe with an unbeaten 27 that steered them to an eight wicket win over First Division Pudsey St Lawrence.
St Lawrence were restricted to just 111 as 15yearold opening bowler Max Senior took the first two wickets for 16 runs in six overs and Josh Fell, another teenager, took 316 in seven. In reply former Kiwi batsman Tony Blain went for 11 but opening partner Richard Gould made a top scoring 58 leaving Carter and Fell to see Gomersal home.
It followed another vital league win the previous day when visiting Spen Victoria were beaten by 10 wickets thanks to an unbeaten 51 from Blain and 67 from Gould which took him past the 900 mark for the season. Left arm spinner Chris Rhodes took 520 as Spen were were bowled out for 120.
Carter’s side go to second bottom Brighouse with a ten point lead and a game in hand over second placed Pudsey Congs but with East Bierley only 17 points behind in third place.
There is little to get excited about in the Gomersal first team as they host second bottom Baildon with 60 points to make up on third bottom Hanging Heaton with only four games to play.
 Relegation has been a near certainty for most of the season and who goes down with them could be decided this week. Hanging Heaton are in third bottom spot but a victory at Bradford and Bingley, or a Gomersal win over Baildon, would effectively send Baildon down. Hanging Heaton failed to make it safe when they were bowled out for 120 chasing 2404 at home to Cleckheaton. That kept Cleckheaton in the title hunt but with a 29 point deficit to make up on leaders Woodlands tomorrow’s game between the top two, at Moorend, is a now or never moment for John Wood’s men.
Woodlands beat Manningham Mills by 27 runs with Scott Richardson hitting 99 out of 134. But then Chris Brice and Pieter Swanepoel took four apiece to dimiss Mills for 107 as the Oakenshaw side showed their ability to defend a low score.

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