Adam France hauled Broad Oak over the line in a frantic finale at home to high-flyers Honley. Lewis Kenworthy’s meticulously played century was to no avail as France’s rearguard action pinched the six points in a memorable victory. Kenworthy (100, pictured above) soaked up over half the total balls sent down for his debut 1XI ton, an innings that dominated Honley’s 181ao total with Dan Taylor (4-48) impressing with the ball. Dom Finn (51) and Sean Mee (41) bubbled along comfortably but the visitors were guilty of not finishing off their opponents after Oak dramatically collapsed from 156-3 to 162-9. Charlie Taylor (6-42) set the demolition in motion but Oak stalwart France, who’d earlier picked up a wicket off his bowling, scored an crucial 16no to nudge his team over the line on 185-9 with the match reaching its climax.
Hoylandswaine moved to one step away from equalling Honley (2005-2008) and Holmfirth (1975-1978) in winning the Byrom Shield for the fourth successive time and sixth overall. An intoxicating batting performance at Barkisland sent them on their way to a 52-run victory thanks to a Chris Holliday century which was closely tracked by Sarjinder Pal Singh’s 94. Holliday (pictured above) scored 107 from 85 balls, added to by Shakeel Ansar’s 64. However three Barkisland batsmen notched half-centuries in the reply to keep Hoylandswaine’s bowlers working hard for their win. Captain Ben Heritage (56), Luke Bridges (58) and Cameron Van Rensburg (50) all profited with Max Morley taking 2-96 for the visitors. A win in the penultimate matchday will be enough for Swaine to retain Premiership honours.
Shoukat Ali (pictured above) was in unstoppable mood once again as Moorlands’ T20 hero showed off his lethality with the willow as Moorlands confirmed Slaithwaite’s relegation and held onto Hoylandswaine’s coattails at the top. The visitors were dismissed for 117 with spinners Siraj Sajid (4-34) and Eddie Walmsley (3-27) causing most of the damage. Youngster Braiden Fortis was promoted to open the bowling and was rewarded with two wickets as Slaithwaite were comprehensively outplayed in the first innings. Ali made light work of the visitors’ trivial target with an unbeaten 85 from 40 balls as Moorlands cantered to victory in a rapid 12 over reply.
Kirkburton’s professional Roscoe Tahttil (pictured above) was presented with his overseas of the season award (above) prior to their home match with Delph & Dobcross and he went on to inspire his side to an 11th win to remain in sixth place. Tahttil’s 86 took his tally over the 1,110 mark for the second consecutive time and was crucial to Kirkburton’s lofty 272-9 total; their highest ever against Delph since they joined the league in 1999. The Sri Lankan was one of many who contributed as skipper Jonny Butterfield chipped in with 48, opener Andy Smith (31) and John Keeling helped out with 25. Delph’s Umer Yaqoob bagged a five wicket haul for his 51st wicket of the season but they couldn’t stem the flow of runs from the hosts. Keeling then picked up a ‘five-fer’ himself but it was youngster Jack Byrne who impressed as he accounted for the main dangermen in his 4-26. Nathan Jones (44) hung around to lend a bit of respectability to the score but the visitors struggled wilfully to 128ao. Defeats for both Slaithwaite and Mirfield Parish Cavaliers secured Delph’s Premiership status for another season.
Jaycob Curtling (pictured above) consigned bottom side Mirfield Parish Cavaliers to relegation with a fine all-round performance for Armitage Bridge. He took 5-34 for the away side who put an end to a wretched run of form which saw them slip to 8th in the table. David Blakeley (54) hit a half-century for Parish but their 156 was underpar as Bridge made simple work of their chase. Curtling’s 91no was complemented nicely by a 52no from Saqib Matlub as the visitors replied with 161-1 after 26 overs.
Shepley will be glad to see the back of Ben Raven-Hill after he claimed his third century of the season and his second against the Rams. In a quirky parallel to the opening match of the season at Marsh Lane, Tom Chadwick (pictured above) also hit a ton yet finished on the losing side once again as Thongsbridge ran out convincing winners despite Shepley’s spirited pursuit. Raven-Hill kept his runs along the ground as he scored 17 fours and no sixes in his 117. Kai Greig boosted the score with 63 as the hosts made 271-7. Chadwick’s 114 from 130 balls kept Shepley in the hunt for most of the reply despite wickets falling frequently. Ben Balmforth (5-51) claimed the prize scalp of the former Scholes man and his team went on to complete the win as Shepley were bowled out for 226.
Steve Whitwam (pictured above) won’t want the season to end as he once again dominated with both bat and ball. The record-breaking all-rounder scored 61 against former side Scholes where he was a league winner twenty seasons ago. His efforts were backed up by skipper Jack McNamara (39) and Jake Lockwood’s 25 with Louis Brook enjoying a pleasing return of 5-73 for Scholes. Whiwam mopped up with his third five wicket haul on the return to his old stomping ground by taking 5-38. Scholes captain Brad Birkhead (29) top scored as Scholes flopped to 156ao.