Bradford Cricket League: Every point will count as Yeadon battle to avoid drop

New Farnley's Mark Lawson trudges off as the players put the covers back on as rain makes it impossible to make a start in the Bradford League Division One game against Pudsey Congs. PIC: Steve Riding
New Farnley's Mark Lawson trudges off as the players put the covers back on as rain makes it impossible to make a start in the Bradford League Division One game against Pudsey Congs. PIC: Steve Riding
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IF there is one club who know plenty about fine margins, it is Yeadon.

The High Street outfit famously missed out on promotion on the final day of the 2012 season when they needed 16 points for the Second Division title.

They had seemingly missed out on going up last term when they finished third for the second successive campaign – only for the demise of Manningham Mills to earn them a passage to the top-flight.

This time around, Yeadon are pitted in a scramble for points to retain their Division One status and given their predicament at the foot of the table, every point could well count.

Saturday may have proved an almost total washout, not for the first time this season, but the north Leeds outfit managed to chisel out a precious seven points in their rain-affected game with Lightcliffe, one of just two matches to get underway in the top tier.

Yeadon’s bowlers made light of seam-friendly conditions to peg Lightcliffe to 114-9 in their 23-over encounter. The game was set for an intriguing finale with the hosts reaching 30-2 before the heavens opened.

Mohammed Saeed led the way with the ball for Yeadon with 3-39, with Alex Stead top-scoring for the visitors with 44.

While Yeadon were left more than a tad frustrated, they had the consolation of picking up seven points for their troubles on a day when their rivals picked up just three points for abandonments.

Yeadon moved to within 18 points of second-from-bottom East Bierley.

Club representative Duncan Sloane said: “Every point is vital and our fate could come down to one point.

“Although it’s a shame that the rain stopped the game when it did as we felt we were in a good position to win it, although now we will never know.”

On Yeadon’s recent form, he added: “We have been bowling very well, but letting ourselves down with the batting.

“We have not all been ‘turning up’ as we should be doing. If we can get two or three of our main batsmen contributing instead of one, maybe we will be winning more games than losing.

“We have been in most games and losing by 13 and 16 runs and scores like that.

“We definitely are not far away and have not been getting beaten by big scores and it gives us a bit of encouragement for the rest of the season.

“There’s seven games and we are still optimistic. We have got to be in our position.

“Our overseas has been bowling well as has Oliver Halliday. It’s just the fact that we have been letting ourselves down with the bat which has been disappointing.”

Bennett Lane was the other Division One ground to witness any play with Hanging Heaton (183-3) having the better of their game with champions and leaders Cleckheaton, who reached 15-1 in reply in the 20-over match before the rains came.

Gary Fellows, in excellent form this term, hit a high-class 85 from 56 balls, with his innings featuring nine fours and four sixes. The chief support was provided by Nick Connolly (42).

East Bierley v Farsley was an early victim to the rain with New Farnley v Pudsey Congs and Pudsey St Lawrence v Bradford and Bingley soon following before the best efforts of the groundstaff at Woodlands counted for nothing as their game with Morley was also abandoned.

The sole action in Division Two saw high-fliers Baildon (99) lock horns with Saltaire (66-2), only for lightning to end the encounter early. Israr Ullah (4-26 and 34) excelled for Saltaire.

Division 1: *Hanging Heaton 183-3 (G Fellows 85, N Connolly 42), Cleckheaton 15-1; Lightcliffe 114-9 (A Stead 44, M Saeed 3-39), *Yeadon 30-2.

Division 2: Baildon 99 (I Ullah 4-26, I Khan 4-35), *Saltaire 66-2 (I Ullah 34). All other matches abandoned.

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