The Woodlands bowlers had made a fine comeback after looking
as though a breakthrough would never come. Adam Waite had held
the Pudsey innings together whilst never looking as dominant as we
know he can be and as news came through that Cleckheaton had
beaten Farsley to clinch the title, Saffy was able to confirm a week’s
early release and head back home from a Woodlands season for
the 14th time. So perhaps on this fine late summer evening
everyone went home happy.
Pudsey St Lawrence 13 points Woodlands 12 points
Would St Lawrence carry their cup form into today’s match or would they revert to their recent league form? Would Woodlands be able to avenge home league and cup defeats to St Lawrence on consecutive June days?
JCT600 BRADFORD CRICKET LEAGUE 1st DIVISION
SATURDAY 30th AUGUST 2014
Report by Stuart Tordoff
Woodlands travelled to Tofts Road with a mathematical possibility of still being in contention for the championship title but with the knowledge that it would take more than a miracle to stop Cleckheaton retaining their crown. They met a St Lawrence side who until a month ago were themselves valid championship contenders
but whose league form had in recent weeks hit the buffers,
unlike their cup form, which saw them lift the Priestley Cup last
Sunday in a convincing victory over champions-elect
Congratulations from skipper Chris Brice to Sarfraz Ahmed on fine spell and another fine season
– see you next year, Saffy.
Enter Steve Watts, the third Pudsey slow bowler to be summoned by skipper James Smith, and he ran through the rest of the Woodlands batsmen, including Sam Frankland, but not before Sam (right) had accumulated a fine century, producing the innings of his season just when we needed it.
201-9 was perhaps just below a par score but was nevertheless a competitive total. When Sarfraz Ahmed, in a devastating opening spell, reduced Pudsey to 34-3 it looked a formidable target when skipper Smith joined Priestley Cup final man-of-the-match Adam Waite (left) who was surviving without much conviction. These two grew in confidence and looked to be in complete control as they took their stand to 119. Skipper Brice, ringing the bowling changes turned back to Scott Richardson, largely unimpressive in his first spell, who made the breakthrough with his first ball and had Smith caught behind before brother Elliot came back and got Matthew Duce. All eyes were on Adam Waite, still there amid the mayhem, and on Sarfraz Ahmed’s remaining overs. 34 runs were needed from the last 6 overs of which Saffy could bowl 2. The target got nearer as wickets fell and the last over, to be bowled by Scott Richardson, arrived and with 2 balls remaining, 6 runs were required for victory. Adam Waite could only manage a four and a single, and so the match ended in a tie – a fitting result to a fine game of cricket.
The day dawned fair but the Tofts Road wicket was as green as
it gets in those parts as Woodlands won the toss and skipper
Chris Brice, deputising in the absence of Pieter Swanepoel elected
to bat. From the outset Woodlands struggled against the opening attack of Craig Wiseman and Chris Marsden. Marsden, whose roly-poly figure disguises a fine cricketer, completely bamboozled Duncan Snell and bowled him with only 6 on the board and then had Sam Frankland dropped at slip by Mark Robertshaw as Pudsey made run scoring very difficult. Simon Mason went to a cheap caught and bowled to make the score 43-2 before Sam and Logan Weston steadied the ship and took the score to 109 with some slick running between the wickets before Logan was sent back by Sam when calling for a non-existent run, slipped, and was run out.