Cleckheaton defeated by super Hartley spell

Woodlands and New Farnley players and well wishers pay their respects to Peter Graham who died on the eve of the new JCT600 Bradford League season.
Woodlands and New Farnley players and well wishers pay their respects to Peter Graham who died on the eve of the new JCT600 Bradford League season.

Cleckheaton suffered a surprise defeat at Bradford and Bingley on a dramatic opening day to the JCT600 Bradford League campaign.

The Division One champions were skittled for just 80 as they slipped to a 164-run defeat at Wagon Lane.

Ryan Cooper was the cornerstone of the Bingley innings, top scoring with a fine 84, which included four sixes and eight fours.

He was supported by new signing Billy Cookson (37)

Cleckheaton’s Scotland international Iain Wardlaw claimed the two wickets he needed to reach 500 in Bradford League cricket, while new signing Curtis Free, recruited from Doncaster Town, took 3-54 as Bingley closed on a challenging total of 244-9.

Young Bingley paceman Jack Hartley claimed 7-47 in reply, with Tim Jackson (39) the only Cleckheaton batsman to show resistance as they were bowled out for 80.

There was a close finish at Albert Terrace where Woodlands edged home against New Farnley by 13 runs.

The home side were made to work hard for their 185-9, which saw Grant Soames score a patient 45, while overseas player Sarfraz Ahmed produced some lusty blows late on as he made an unbeaten 38.

Former Northants off spinner James Middlebrook took 3-45 on his New Farnley debut.

Farnley lost wickets at regular intervals in reply as left-arm spinner Chris Brice took 5-65.

Opener Matthew Good made 36, but the highlight of the innings was an unbeaten 73 from Nick Walker which threatened to snatch the game from Woodlands’ grasp but they finished agonisingly short on 172 all out.

Hanging Heaton began with a 45-run victory over newly promoted Saltaire.

Australian Nick Connolly carried his bat to make 106 not out in an innings which included 12 fours.

David Paynter supported with 40, while Joe Fraser made 29 late on to boost the home side’s total to 252-5.

Saltaire made a spirited reply of 207 but were undone by an excellent spell of spin bowling from Ben Elvidge, who returned 7-57 as Heaton claimed a maximum 20 points.

There was a high-scoring game at East Bierley where the home side went down by 14 runs against Pudsey St Lawrence.

The Saints made 283-5, thanks to a sparkling 126 not out from James Smith, in an innings which including five sixes and 15 fours.

Smith was joined in an unbroken sixth-wicket stand of 109 by Tom Hudson, who made 38no.

East Bierley captain Dan Shuffe clattered 10 sixes and five fours in reply as he made 110 off just 71 balls.

Opener James Ford made 37 on debut but Bierley’s effort fell just short as they finished on 269-8.