Bradford League: Hafeez seals narrow victory for Batley over Cleckheaton
Batley boosted their chances of avoiding the drop as they won a close contest with neighbours Cleckheaton in the Premier Division of the Gordon Rigg Bradford League.
Their second win of the season will give them fresh heart, while it also gave Cleckheaton fresh fears of relegation, but it could not have been much closer as Batley edged home by one wicket with two balls to spare.
The win was sealed when Mohammad Hafeez (26no) hit the fourth ball of the final over from spinner Amir Hussain (5-44) for six to overhaul Cleckheaton’s total of 204-7.
Skipper Roheil Hussain (48) and fellow opener Abdul Wahid (32) gave Batley a solid start, which Tahseen Suleman (32) and Hafeez built on.
Cleckheaton’s innings included contributions of Craig Fletcher (57no) and Ian Carradice (43) as they recovered from 58-4, but the Batley bowlers plugged away with two wickets each for Adal Islam and Hafeez.
Sixth-placed Hanging Heaton were unable to prevent New Farnley from going top of the Premier as they lost by 179 runs.
The new leaders’ win owed much to the batting of Adam Waite, who smashed 15 fours and five sixes as he made an unbeaten 147 in his side’s 309-5.
Heaton lost Gary Fellows without score and saw wickets continue to fall at regular intervals as they were all out for 130, Nick Connolly (26) top scoring.
Birstall moved to within nine points of the top of Division One with a 47-run win over local rivals East Bierley.
Juned Delair impressed with 7-50 as Birstall bowled out Bierley for 169 to wrap up their eighth win of the season.
Ben Walter (75, including eight fours and five sixes) provided the only serious threat as Birstall defended their score of 216-7, which featured contributions from Eric Austin (44), Brandon Silverwood (37), Nick Kaye (32) and Matthew Dyson (27).
Walter was also the most successful East Bierley bowler with 4-62.
Second from bottom Hartshead Moor lost out in a close contest with Keighley, losing by two wickets after making 175-7.
Keighley only got home with 11 balls to spare as Josh Marsden took 4-39 and Dave McCallum 2-50. But Hartshead Moor, who are now 15 points adrift of safety, were unable to post a big enough total when they batted first. Skipper McCallum (39no) top scored.
Hopton Mills boosted their chances of promotion from Division Two after a 97-run win over East Ardsley.
Half centuries from Gary Senior (58) and Umar Abbas (54) were backed up by Conor Heywood (37no) as a total of 223-8 was posted.
Ardsley were quickly reduced to 12-5 and only Simon Tucker’s 47 provided resistance to Abbas (4-45) and Michael Carroll (3-47) as they were all out for 126.
Crossbank Methodist remain fourth in Division Three after a 79-run win over East Leeds.
With James Lord hitting 75, Muhammad Shah 31 and Christian Duncan 25 they were able to make 188 then bowled East Leeds out for 109.
Arshad Jan (4-50) and Imran Patel (3-23) did most of the damage with the ball.
Farhad Iman (54no), Paul Cooper (41) and Usman Qureshi (41) enabled Heckmondwike & Carlinghow to chase down Rodley’s 206-7 to win by three wickets.
Rodley dropped to the bottom of the table after they were restricted by Javed Iqbal (3-51), Paul Cooper (2-15) and Samuel Beacham (2-44).
Despite 60 from Asad Mahmood, Liversedge were unable to post a big enough score as they lost by four wickets to promotion contenders Great Preston.
With Wasim Nazir also hitting 34 and James Lunn 28 Liversedge did make 186. Syed Shah then took 3-51 in vain as Preston reached their target with almost 14 overs to spare.