Aire-Wharfe League: Dominant Otley turn heat up on rivals

James Davies
James Davies
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League leaders Otley were in dominant form as they thrashed Guiseley by 162 runs to extend their lead over second-placed Burley to 12 points, writes FORREST HAMILTON.

Otley batted first and racked up 297-6, James Davies (74) and Dave Hester (56) doing the brunt of the damage before Davies dismantled Guiseley with the ball, taking 5-22 to set up a crushing victory.

Chairman Chris Smith said: “We played very, very well, as we did in the previous game after a bit of a blip.

“James Davies came up with the goods once again and Dave Hester, a new lad who has come in, was superb.

“After a really great start, it was a good test of character to see how we would bounce back after a couple of losses.

“We lost four games on the trot last year and it kind of derailed our season, so it was good to see us display that character.”

Otley play Guiseley again in the semi-finals of the Waddilove Cup on Sunday, but Smith doesn’t think their victory on Saturday will play a part.

“It will be completely different on Sunday,” he said. “Neither team will be taking anything for granted and it will all start bang even.”

“It would be great to win it with the final being at Otley,” continued Smith, who believes that there are still “four or five teams capable of winning the league.”

He added: “With the new points system, gaps close up very quickly.

“Beckwithshaw are on a great run and Burley never give it up; anybody in the top four or five could win it.”

Elsewhere in Division One, Steeton upset in-form Burley as they won by 43 runs. Matthew Price (62) top scored as Steeton posted 259-8.

Burley were well set at 171-4 but collapsed after Ed Brown (86) was dismissed and were eventually bowled out for 216, Steve Pearson taking 5-36.

Beckwithshaw continued their charge up the table with a comfortable win over Ilkley. Yasir Ali made 66 for ’Shaw (207-7) and Tom Lilley took 6-45 with the ball to secure a 74 run win.

Collingham’s spinners took all 10 wickets as Bilton were bowled out for 172 in their pursuit of 230.

Toby Jacklin (83 and 3-34) starred with bat and ball, with leg spinner Steve James (5-41) also featuring prominently as Collingham won their fourth game in a row.

Pool secured a vital nine-wicket win against fellow relegation strugglers Ben Rhydding, Tosh Baker (82no) leading the way as Pool cruised home.

Sam Wilkinson earlier took 5-53 as Ben Rhydding stuttered to 142 all out. Charlie Swallow (62) top scored.

Rawdon came agonisingly close to chasing down Kirkstall’s 265-9 but eventually fell just eight runs short as they closed on 257-9.

In Division Two, Follifoot stayed at the top of the table with a tense one-wicket victory over Colton. Alex Fox (56) top scored for Follifoot as they chased down 202, with their final pair putting on 15 vital unbeaten runs.

Adel fell behind the leaders as they lost to relegation strugglers Thackley by five wickets.

Mark Johnson (53) led the way for Adel whilst Bradley Goodaire (7-40) starred for lowly Thackley.

Joshua Brooksbank (76no) ensured Adel’s total of 145 was never going to be enough.

Thackley moved off the bottom of the table on the strength of the victory.

Going home: ICC Trophy-winning captain Sarfaraz Ahmed.
Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe

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