Bradford League: Fellows salutes Hanging Heaton’s ‘brilliant’ trophy hat-trick

Hanging Heaton's Gary Fellows. PIC: Steve Riding
Hanging Heaton's Gary Fellows. PIC: Steve Riding
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EVEN accounting for some magnificent feats at the business end of seasons in years gone by, all-conquering Hanging Heaton truly surpassed themselves on Sunday.

That is the verdict of captain Gary Fellows, whose match-winning knock of 88 not out helped ensure Vitality Club T20 glory for the Tewits against Norfolk side Swardeston on Sunday evening at Derby’s County Ground.

Pudsey St Lawrence stepping out at Scarborough. PIC: Richard Ponter

Pudsey St Lawrence stepping out at Scarborough. PIC: Richard Ponter

Heaton triumphed by five wickets after being set a testing target of 165, having earlier beaten Sussex side Roffey in the semi-finals by seven wickets after dismissing them for 99.

David Stiff and Tom Chippendale took three wickets apiece against Roffey.

Victory over Swardeston clinched the third leg of a memorable trophy treble after earlier success in the Yorkshire Champions Trophy and Heavy Woollen Cup on the previous two Sunday’s – with the Bennett Laners becoming the first White Rose side to win the prestigious T20 competition in the process.

Silverware may have kept the club’s trophy cabinet well stocked over a number of years, but Sunday represented something special, according to Fellows.

As to whether it represents the best season yet for the Tewits, Fellows told the YEP: “Quite possibly. It is one to really look back on.

“Obviously winning the league and being consistent over the course of a year is a great achievement and the victory at Headingley was great (Yorkshire Premier League play-offs in 2017).

“But I suppose three weeks ago, we stared down the barrel at three finals and you want to win all three, but also know there is nothing guaranteed. To take all three is brilliant. Maybe it exceeds what we thought we might have done.

“It was a great weekend for the club, players and supporters and I do not think we could have scripted it any better ourselves, if I am honest.

“We really enjoyed it. We turned up wanting to make sure we enjoyed the weekend and experience. We came down on Saturday night for a dinner and then played at a county ground.

“We have probably played our best cricket in the last few weeks in the finals and people have pulled out performances.

“As a captain, you always want to lead from the front and stand up and be counted. To do it in a final like that is a little bit extra special. It was great to get us over the line.

“We had some really good support and quite a lot of people come down and it was a good atmosphere and setting and we probably played the best cricket we could play.”

Heaton’s rivals can rest assured that there will be no let-up from the Bennett Lane men next season and after enjoying the fruits of their labours in the close-season, the plan, once again, will be to attack silverware on several fronts once again.

Fellows said: “We have a few older guys, but we plan to stick together – maybe with an addition or two. The guys have really enjoyed it and earned a rest this winter. But it will come around again before we know it. Now it is a case of just enjoying the success and next year will take care of itself.

“We are fortunate in that the atmosphere at the club, not just in the first team, is terrific. We play a lot of cricket on a Saturday and Sunday and it can be quite tough and you have to make sure you enjoy it, play with a bit of freedom and a smile on your face.

“We know we have got talent in the team and that if things click on the day, we feel we can beat anybody.”

Pudsey St Lawrence saw their hopes of reaching a second Yorkshire Premier League Play-Off final dashed at Scarborough on Saturday.

They suffered an 18-run defeat at the hands of North Yorkshire South Durham League side Great Ayton, who will now play Wakefield Thornes at Headingley this Saturday.

Chasing a target of 180, St Lawrence fell short by 19 runs with just under seven overs to spare with opening bowlers Pitigala Jeewantha (4-34) and Joe Marsay (4-48) in impressive form for the victors, whose leading light with the bat was Mitch Davis (79).

Captain Chris Marsden took a tidy 5-28 for Lawrence, whose top-scorer was opener Mark Robertshaw (39).