Grech helps Rams go top

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Northowram Fields stormed to the top of the Bradford League’s Conference on the back of an unbeaten 120 from Ben Grech at Wakefield St Michael’s yesterday.

The contest escaped the rain which affected most games involving Calderdale teams and the Rams crushed their hosts by 169 runs to move above Great Preston.

Opener Grech, probably the best product yet of the club’s junior set-up revived several years ago, hit 16 boundaries.

He and Dru Patel (61 no), who had hit a second team ton at the venue before, shared an unbroken fourth-wicket stand of 179 which helped their side to a total of 263 for three.

Bowlers Jonathan Lee (4-10) and Zafar Khan (3-43) are also in excellent form and they helped bowl out St Michael’s for 94.

In the Premier Division, Lightcliffe were struggling at 113 for seven at Woodlands before the game was abandoned.

Seven men made double figures but none were able to stick around too long with Alex Stead’s 19 the top score.

Long-serving home overseas player Sarfraz Ahmed dismissed Lightcliffe’s top four.

Brighouse were 140 for six off 38 overs at the rustic setting of Hopton Mills in Championship B when play was ended.

Veteran Maz Bhatti (35) and Awaise Hussain (32) were the hat-trick seeking visitors’ top scorers.

Star all-rounder Alex Scholefield’s 98 not out was in vain as Barkisland lost at home to another of the Huddersfield League’s leading sides, Hoylandswaine.

Scholefield helped Barkisland to 234 for six but last year’s runners-up won a tight contest by three wickets thanks to S.P. Singh’s 53 not out.

Cawthorne were 154 for one at home to Elland, for who seventh-choice bowler Saqib Matlub had just broken a big opening partnership, when the heavens opened.

Leaders Walsden made their first trip to Greenfield in the Pennine League a successful one with a nine-wicket win.

Their hosts, formerly of the Saddleworth League, made 202 for six with their innings dominated by an unbeaten 130 from Aussie James Muirhead, occasional bowler Matthew Dawson taking three for 39.

Walsden openers James Rawlinson (91) and Josh Gale (88 no) threatened to knock off the runs on their own but the skipper departed with the total on 176.

Bradford League, Premier Division: Lightcliffe 113-7 (45 overs, S Ahmed 4-31) v *Woodlands. Championship B: Brighouse 140-6 (38 overs, A Hussain 31, Mu Bhatti 35) v *Hopton Mills. Conference: Northowram Fields 263-3 (50 overs, B Grech 120*, D Patel 61*), *Wakefield St Michaels 94 (J Lee 4-10, Z Khan 3-43).

Huddersfield League, Premiership: *Barkisland 234-6 (A Scholefield 98 no), Hoylandswaine 235-7 (S P Singh 53no; R Coetzer 3-73); *Cawthorne 149-1 (I Khan 71no, B Simpson 63) v Elland.

Aire/Wharfe League, Division Two: Ben Rhydding 228 (49.2 overs, R Miller 100; B Robertshaw 4-60) *Illingworth 137 for eight (30 overs, D Murfet 51, L Brooksby 51).

Pennine League: *Greenfield 202-6 (J Muirjead 130*; M Dawson 3-39), Walsden 204 for one (J Rawlinwson 91, Josh Gale 88*).