Bradford Cricket League Division One witnessed an exciting weekend of cricket as Batley Cricket Club emerged victorious in a thrilling encounter against promotion rivals Undercliffe. The match, held at Intake Road, saw Batley claim a hard-fought 14-run win, propelling them to the top of the division.
Batley’s impressive batting performance set the tone for their triumph, as they posted a formidable total of 266 runs. Nikash Khan led the charge with a stellar knock of 81, supported by Aadam Hussain (62) and Abaab Hussain (36). However, Zeeshan Qasim of Undercliffe proved to be a formidable adversary, taking six wickets for 67 runs.
In their pursuit of victory, Undercliffe fought valiantly but fell short, being bowled out for 252 runs. Ben Morley (79), Bailey Worcester (54), and Ollie Hardaker (46) displayed resilience with the bat, but were unable to secure a win for their team. Batley’s Arbaab Hussain (4-72) and Nasir Totakhil (3-40) played vital roles in their team’s success, taking crucial wickets and earning Batley an additional 20 points.
Division One showcased an abundance of runs on Saturday, with four teams surpassing the 300-run mark. Cleckheaton Cricket Club continued their impressive form with a commanding 174-run victory over Undercliffe. Overseas player Yousaf Baber was the standout performer for Cleckheaton, scoring an outstanding 137 runs, his second consecutive century. Mally Nicholson (48), Waleed Akhtar (47), and Ethan Lee (34) also contributed significantly to Cleckheaton’s imposing total of 309-7. Zeeshan Qasim (5-99) emerged as the lone bright spot for Undercliffe’s bowlers.
Undercliffe’s batting woes continued as they were bowled out for a mere 135 runs, succumbing to James Stansfield’s exceptional bowling performance of 4-16. Qasim, once again, demonstrated his talent by top-scoring for Undercliffe with 34 runs.
Batley’s impressive form continued with a convincing 98-run win over Sandal Cricket Club. Aadam Hussain (94), Roheil Hussain (40), and Daanyaal Hussain (38) propelled Batley to a competitive total of 246-7. The bowling duo of Nasir Jamal (4-29) and Nasir Totakhil (4-41) proved to be instrumental in dismantling Sandal’s batting lineup, leading Batley to another victory.
Morley Cricket Club secured a thrilling five-wicket win over Gomersal Cricket Club in a high-scoring encounter at Oxford Road. Morley’s James McNichol displayed exceptional batting prowess, scoring his second century of the season with three sixes and 16 fours. Jack Rowett (48) and Joe Finnigan (58 not out) provided crucial contributions as Morley successfully chased down Gomersal’s imposing total of 315-6.
Despite the defeat, Gomersal’s Fergus McKenna showcased his skills with a remarkable century, accumulating 109 runs with four sixes and 13 fours. Jonathan Boynton (53 not out), Shabir Rashid (45), and Lewis Edmond (37) also made significant contributions to Gomersal’s formidable total.
In another exciting contest, East Ardsley Cricket Club emerged victorious against Birstall Cricket Club, securing their first win of the season. Opener James Van Der Merwe led the charge with 85 runs as East Ardsley were dismissed for 188. Spinner Dave McCullum starred for Birstall, claiming four wickets for 16 runs. Birstall’s chase faltered as Ashley Pearson (4-26) and Josh Wild (3-11) bowled them out for 163, leading East Ardsley to a 25-run win.
East Bierley Cricket Club continued their promotion charge with a hard-fought 24-run win over Yeadon Cricket Club. Nisar Ahmad, East Bierley’s overseas fast bowler, delivered a devastating spell of 7-34 to dismantle Yeadon’s batting lineup. Gareth Lee’s impressive figures of 6-44 initially provided hope for Yeadon, but they fell short of East Bierley’s total of 207. Sam Gatenby’s consistent form continued with a well-made 56 for East Bierley.
With their victory, Batley Cricket Club now holds the top spot in Bradford Cricket League Division One, amassing 136 points and establishing a 12-point lead over Cleckheaton, who sit in second place. Undercliffe follows closely in third position after suffering defeats against the two teams above them in the table. As the competition intensifies, Division One promises more exhilarating cricket matches in the coming weeks.