AFTER a sobering Saturday, Pudsey St Lawrence were probably glad that they had a quick chance of redemption against arch-rivals Pudsey Congs on Bank Holiday Monday.
So it proved. Beaten by Lightcliffe in the first part of their double-header, James Smith’s side returned to winning ways against their neighbours after their peerless start to the ECB Bradford Premier campaign had been ended 48 hours earlier.
It was not without a game fight from Congs after St Lawrence opened with an imposing 247-3 – Adam Waite smashing an outstanding 124 not out for the Top Enders.
In reply, captain Gareth Phillips (48) and Callum Geldart (46) made contributions for Congs (229-8), but it could not stop them dropping into the bottom two after their fourth successive reverse; they lost out to Hanging Heaton on Saturday.
At the other end, St Lawrence are 18 points clear, with the damage of Saturday’s loss to Lightcliffe minimised by dramatic events elsewhere.
It was a mixed weekend for a number of aspiring sides, with Hanging Heaton, Cleckheaton and Woodlands all winning one and losing one, with the big beneficiaries being Farsley, who claimed back-to-back wins. New Farnley also won twice.
The Red Laners are up to an impressive third place – level with Cleck – after backing up Saturday’s seven-wicket win over Morley with a 26-run success over Bradford and Bingley.
Overseas Arthur Price made his maiden league century, hitting a fine 109 to help Farsley (218-8), sink B&B (192), with Mustafa Rafique (4-29) and Chris Henry (3-58) among the wickets.
It sealed a top weekend for Rafique, who had taken 4-5 two days earlier to skittle Morley for just 68, James Wainman – fresh from appearing for Yorkshire in the T20 – bagging 3-15.
Morley, who started the weekend in third, then lost by eight wickets to Woodlands.
The efforts of Luke Heinemann (57) ensured Morley, without Kashif Naveed, totalled 170, but it was never likely to be enough and so it proved with openers Sam Frankland (76) and captain Tim Jackson (37) sharing a stand of 110 as they replied with 173-2.
On the Saturday, Woodlands had come out on the wrong side of a 79-run loss in a run-fest against Cleck, for whom Chris Holliday struck a marvellous unbeaten 151, but the Moorenders then suffered woe against more neighbours.
It proved the surprise result of the campaign so far, with winless Scholes (230-6) sinking Cleck (226) by four wickets.
Scholes hero was overseas player Rizwan Ahmed, who struck an unbeaten 81 as they prevailed with two balls left – with John Wood’s side suffering for not batting out their overs.
Another surprise saw fellow strugglers East Bierley (155-9) – who beat Scholes on Saturday – also seal a perfect weekend by ousting Hanging Heaton (98) by 57 runs to move out of the bottom two, courtesy of a virtuoso all-round display from Matthew Lumb (41no and 4-37).
On Saturday, the Tewits (267-6) had beaten Congs (235) by 32 runs, Joe Fraser hitting 93, Nick Lindley making a brave 96 in a losing cause.
Farnley followed up victory over B&B with a 22-run success over Lightcliffe, thanks to Nick Walker (93) and Mohammed Bilal (6-68).
MISERLY bowling from Muhammad Hafeez (3-9) and Aqsad Ali (3-14) helped Batley continue their excellent start to the Championship A campaign with an eight-wicket routing of lowly Idle, skittled for just 51.
There was relief for Ossett (95-3), who put behind their seasonal toils to claim their first league win of the campaign with an impressive seven-wicket triumph over Hunslet Nelson (94) to move out of the bottom two, Khalid Usman taking 5-33.
Another side who tasted the sensation of league victory for the first time this term were Birstall (217-9), who prevailed by one wicket against Keighley (214-2), thanks to a key 80 not out from Nick Kaye (80no).
Liversedge’s Stephen Lane put Saltaire (157-9) in a spin with super figures of 6-35 to help them prevail by three wickets, replying with 159-7 .
Championship B leaders Townville ensured six of the best after a 74-run win over Bankfoot – and they lead Methley by 26 points.
Townville were inspired by a unplayable spell of bowling from Jack Hughes, who took 6-10 as Bankfoot were back in the showers for 160 after the victors opened with 234-9. The lion’s share of their runs arrived from Jonathan Booth (71) and Tim Walton (68).
Captain Grant Soames (56), overseas Samuel Mafokeng (42 and 3-42), Sohail Raz (4-36) and, Marcus Walmsley (3-3) made contributions in Methley’s 128-run win over Carlton, despite the efforts of Arman Hussain (4-46) and Farrukh Alam (50).
Gomersal (260-6) have moved up on the rails to third after beating winless Hartshead Moor (184-9) by 76 runs.
Jack Seddon hit an eye-catching 72, well supported by Jonathan Boynton (58), while a brave 85 not out from Craig Field was in vain for Moor.
Openers Imran Mayat (121) and Dominic Richardson (82) shared in a dream stand of 209 as Altofts (343-9) enjoyed a sunshine day with the bat en route to a 290-run drubbing of Brighouse, dismissed for just 53.
Arkam Asif picked up 5-10.
Wrenthorpe seamers Chris Leaf (6-28) and Jonathan Rudge (4-28) helped dismissed Bowling Old Lane for 69, with fourth-placed Wrens surviving a wobble to win with 73-6.
Spen Victoria (128) lost by eight wickets to Hopton Mills (132-2).