Aire-Wharfe League: Rawdon’s investment in youth is paying off

Eugene Burzler
Eugene Burzler
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Rawdon’s Chairman Lawrence Walker is “putting the emphasis on giving young players a chance this season” as Rawdon search for a strong campaign in league and cup.

The Airedale and Wharfedale Cricket League was in full flow at the weekend with all Division One and Two teams in action.

Rawdon moved up to third in the table as they beat bottom-of-the-table Kirkstall Educational by 142-runs.

Home side, Rawdon, put up a total of 255 all out and the visitors simply couldn’t compete as they were bowled out for 113, capping a strong team performance for Rawdon.

Walker has been impressed with the team so far this season and is hoping for success later on in this campaign: “The aim (this season) is to go as far as we can in the cup and to try and finish in the top four in the league.

“We’re under no illusions; we don’t think we’re in it to challenge for the title, but we do certainly feel we can compete.

“We’re trying to give homegrown players a chance and build a team for the future with them, and compete well in the league.”

Elsewhere in Division One, top-of-the-table Beckwithshaw travelled to second-placed defending champions Otley.

Otley batted first and managed 213 all out with Jamie Pickering being the pick of the batsmen with 75, and Eugene Burzler shining with the ball for Beckwithshaw taking 5-56.

In reply Beckwithshaw struggled, losing wickets at regular intervals and, thanks to the bowling displays of Chris Thompson (5-57) and Ricky Halloran (4-49), Otley bowled out the visitors for 175.

The win meant Otley leapfrogged Beckwithshaw to go top of the league.

There was a surprise victory for Ilkley in their fixture with high-flying Horsforth.

Horsforth were bowled out for just 123 and Ilkley had enough to reach their target but did lose seven wickets in the process.

Burley’s Nick Brook took 6-26 as his man-of-the-match performance ensured Burley defended their total of 193 as they beat Pool by 20-runs.

North Leeds beat Steeton by four wickets after chasing down a target of 175.

And, finally, there was a win for Collingham in their match against Bilton as Collingham’s 214 total proved to be too much for their hosts.

Division Two saw Guiseley remain at the top of the table as they beat Illingworth by seven wickets.

Taylor Cumberland (57 no) and Michael Trusswell (71) put on a strong partnership as the league leaders comfortably chased down a 160 target.

Colton Institute remain a close second as they beat third-placed Knaresborough by 53-runs.

The visitors set Knaresborough a target of 212, but the home side couldn’t find a big scorer in their batting order and they managed only 159 all out in reply.

Addingham and Adel met in a mid-table clash and it was Adel who came out on top.

Adel set their hosts 167 to win and then defended their total with some good bowling from both Simon Parkinson (3-31) and Mark Dixon (4-28). Elsewhere, Ben Rhydding dominated second-bottom Follifoot as they won by 206-runs.

Calverley saw off Skipton easily by 91-runs, and Thackley beat bottom-of-the-table Harden by 99-runs.

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