REIGNING Bradford League champions Cleckheaton go to Bradford and Bingley tomorrow (Sat) hoping to build on their superb return to action last weekend.
Following league and cup successes they now top the First Division and face a Priestley Cup semi-final on 13 July.
The league win over Farsley was a personal triumph for Andy Gorrod, who fully justified the plaudits heaped on him by skipper John Wood when he secured his services last winter.
Gorrod had a fine start to his Bradford League career with Gomersal in Division Two but struggled for consistency in Division One with Lightcliffe and has been finding his feet in the top flight this season.
But, he certainly came good against Farsley. After an opening stand of 192 with Tim Jackson (92) he went on to make 124 out of 252-6 before being bowled by Graham Hume.
Cleckheaton old boy Joe Sayers, formerly with Yorkshire, carried his bat for 63 in the Farsley innings but the visitors had no answer to Tanveel Altaf (5-44) and Andrew Deegan (3-34) as they slumped to 123 all out in reply.
Woodlands’ 10-run defeat at home to Pudsey St Lawrence saw Cleckheaton go top while on Sunday it was a double success for Cleck and a double defeat for Woodlands – as they lost again to St Lawrence, this time in the Priestley Cup.
Cleckheaton went through to the last four at the expense of Hanging Heaton, who also lost both weekend games, and though the openers failed to repeat their previous day’s performance, a middle order 59 from wicket keeper Mally Nicholson helped them to 195 in 45 overs.
David Stiff took 4-52 for Hanging Heaton but conceded 52 in 10 overs – including 15 wides.
In reply Imran Dawood hit a top scoring 49 but Hanging Heaton fell 36 runs short after a 4-29 return from impressive spinner Altaf left them on 157 all out.
Next up for Hanging Heaton is a trip to in-form Pudsey St Lawrence tomorrow (Sat) when former skipper John Carruthers will be hoping to move a step closer to his target of 1,000 Bradford League wickets. He goes into the game needing just two more.
In Division Two, defeats for Spen Victoria, at Idle, and Hartshead Moor, at Saltaire, leave Gomersal, Spen and Hartshead in sixth, seventh and ninth place respectively.
Gomersal were the district’s only success in the division as useful knocks from Jon Boynton (56 not out), skipper Greg Pickles (45) and Jack Seddon (32) steered them to a four wicket win at Bankfoot after Adam Greenwood (4-21) had helped bowl the home side out for 162.
The Oxford Road side now have a free week while Spen go to Brighouse and Hartshead Moor are at home to Baildon.
• CLECKHEATON CC will host giant-killers Undercliffe in the semi-finals of the Priestley Cup.
The visitors, who currently top Division Two, have another shot at Division One opposition after knocking out Pudsey Congs and Morley in the previous rounds.
There is potential for an all-Spen final as in the second semi-final East Bierley have been drawn at home against Pudsey St Lawrence.
Both semi-finals will be played on July 13, with the final to be hosted by Undercliffe on Sunday August 24.
In the Priestley Shield defending champions Hanging Heaton will face fellow Division One side Morley in their last-four clash.
In the other semi-final Pudsey St Lawrence are at home to Division Two team Keighley – with both games to be played on July 13.