In an action-packed day of cricket, the Halifax Cricket League Premier Division witnessed thrilling encounters as teams battled it out on Saturday, 8th July 2023. Blackley, Luddendenfoot, Bradshaw, Copley, Grassy Bottom, Sowerby Bridge, Triangle, Oxenhope, Mytholmroyd, SBCI, Booth, and Illingworth St Mary’s were the key teams in action, each leaving their mark on the field.

At Blackley’s home ground, the home team won the toss and elected to field first against Luddendenfoot. The visitors put up a strong batting performance, posting a commendable total of 246 runs, all out in the 44th over. Thomas Hosker (65) and James Yates (44) displayed excellent form, exploiting the weakened Blackley bowling attack. Despite all five bowlers taking wickets, Blackley’s players were left contemplating their performance.

However, during their chase, Blackley managed to match Luddendenfoot’s score, finishing at 246-7 in their allotted 45 overs. Joe Hardcastle (80) and Michael Midwood (69) led the charge, with Midwood being unfortunately caught out with just four runs required for a victory. Ultimately, the match ended in a tie, leaving Blackley both delighted and disappointed.

In another encounter, Bradshaw faced off against Copley, with Bradshaw setting a target of 193-7 in their innings, which was reduced to 33 overs. Matthew Crowther (52) and Piers Fisher (41) were the standout performers, supported by three other batters who scored in the twenties.

Copley’s response, however, was disastrous as they crumbled to a mere 55 all out. Aaron Buckley was the star of the bowling attack, wreaking havoc with figures of 9.5-2-19-7, surpassing his previous best performance of 7-41 achieved back in 2019. Anthony Langton contributed by taking three wickets for 24 runs.

Grassy Bottom hosted a reduced overs contest, where Sowerby Bridge took full advantage against Triangle, amassing a formidable total of 251-8 in just 30 overs. Tom Belfield (50), Razwan Saghir (46), and James Taylor (43) led the charge, with additional thirties added to strengthen the innings.

Triangle struggled in their response, falling well short of their target and ultimately being bowled out for 194 runs. Tom Fryer top-scored for Triangle with 45 runs, but the Bridge bowlers proved too strong, with five of them sharing the nine wickets.

Oxenhope made a wise decision to bowl first after winning the toss against struggling Mytholmroyd. The home team’s bowlers performed exceptionally, dismissing the visitors for a paltry 122 runs.

Joel Fothergill was the star performer once again, exhibiting excellent bowling skills and recording figures of 9-3-18-4, which were both economical and impactful.

Oxenhope faced little trouble in their chase, reaching 115-4 in just the 14th over. Their target was reduced due to a short break in play.

SBCI hosted Booth in a 29-over match where SBCI, after being sent in to bat, managed to score 176-7. Alexander Scholefield top-scored with 55 runs, receiving support from three other players who contributed in the twenties and thirties.

Scholefield had a phenomenal all-round performance, also shining with the ball, taking 6 wickets for 43 runs. Booth struggled to find their rhythm and were eventually bowled out for 137 runs.

The highly anticipated top-of-the-table clash between Illingworth St Mary’s and Thornton at Illingworth’s home ground ended in disappointment.

St Mary’s won the toss and elected to field first, causing early trouble for Thornton, who lost two quick wickets. However, a scintillating partnership between Josh Hutchinson (108 not out) and Grant Soames (53) brought Thornton back into the game, with the duo adding 134 runs in rapid fashion.

Hutchinson went on to complete a century, reaching his closing score in just 69 balls. Unfortunately, the match was abandoned without another ball being bowled, leaving both teams unable to determine a winner.