Liversedge go top

LIVERSEDGE CC take on Hopton Mills at Roberttown Lane tomorrow (Sat), with the teams lying in first and second places respectively in the Championship and with just five points separating the two sides.

Hopton Mills lost their top spot when they were surprisingly beaten by 50 runs at East Ardsley following a match winning 5-18 return from veteran David Battye in just 10 overs. In fact, the margin would have been even greater but for a quick-fire 43 off 28 balls from Hopton number eight Bradley Drake.

New leaders Liversedge were awarded all the points after Caribbean conceded the match without a ball being bowled.

It is sad to see games being decided under these circumstances. With only eight teams in this division, the sight of Caribbean anchored to the foot of the Championship table with only three points – 35 behind the club above them – is evidence of a hopeless mismatch. If the Leeds side cannot now guarantee fulfilling fixtures, a most unsatisfactory situation has developed.

Huge differences in ability are developing between the divisions and sometimes even within them. For example, Buttershaw St Paul’s sit at the bottom of the Premier Division, with 12 points now to make up on third-bottom Hunslet Nelson.

They did well to win promotion with  champions Batley last season, but while Batley, despite a six-wicket defeat at the hands of leaders Methley in their last game, have recovered quite well after a disastrous start, Buttershaw seem to be lurching from one defeat to another.

In their last game they were beaten by 160 runs at Mirfield Parish Cavaliers after former Woodlands skipper Tim Orrell, 83, and Nazar Hussain, 119 not out, helped Parish chalk up 329-4 in their 50 overs.

In reply, Buttershaw mustered just 169. Now they face Hunslet Nelson at St Paul’s Road this week for a game they must win if they are to have any hope of survival in the top flight.

Amongst other Premier Division games, Birstall, beaten by 156 runs at home to Altofts in their last game, now go to championship-chasing Townville and Batley are at home to Wakefield Thornes.

Any lingering hopes of Ossett making a late challenge disappeared with a crushing defeat at the hands of Wrenthorpe at Queens Terrace.

Chasing a total of 238-7, even the presence of Yorkshire’s Richard Pyrah could do little to avoid a batting disaster.

Pyrah took 2-72 in his 15 overs, took one catch and claimed a run out, but contributed nothing with the bat as one of six men to fall without scoring.

Not one player reached double figures. Extras contributed most to Ossett’s total  with 17, and only 22 runs came off the bat in the entire innings.

James Glynn was unplayable as he returned figures of 9-11 in 6.4 overs for Wrenthorpe and Ossett crumbled to 39 all out.

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