Warley won the 131st staging of the Halifax Parish Cup with a hard-fought 26-run success over Triangle in the Briggs Priestley-sponsored final at Copley today.
A crowd of 750 - one of the largest in recent years at the Halifax League’s biggest game of the season - soaked up the sunshine at arguably the Halifax League’s best ground.
They were richly entertained by the Premier Division’s third and fourth-placed sides and there was a predictable stack of runs on an unblemished pitch.
Shazad Hassan’s fluent and chanceless 86 helped Warley boost their score from 116-5 to 279 nine in the final 17 overs.
Plenty of fans, and not just partisan Triangle supporters, thought Christian Silkstone’s men had the firepower to knock off the runs.
However, Daniel Syme, one of two left-arm spinners in the Warley’s ranks, stuck twice in the 21st over to leave Triangle tottering at 64-4 and then twice more in the 32nd over to leave the opposition 164-7.
Kurtis Whippey struck out bravely to try to salvage the situation but Warley were not to be denied and Syme’s 4-39 earned him the man of the match award, adjudged by league side boss Andrew Pinfield, while Shazad had to settle for the Brian Hunter Memorial Trophy as the game’s top scorer.
Silkstone had sprung the first surprise, and risked the wrath of groundsman Mark Baldwin, by surprisingly declining first use of the pitch.
Warley lost Ben Atkinson to an excellent one-handed catch by keeper Chris Metcalf with the score on 27 but Chris Atkinson was nicely into his stride and took the total, in company with Matthew Whitworth, to 59-1 after five overs each from Whippey and Liam Turner.
Experienced pair Gary Rodger - playing in his 10th Parish Cup final - and Dave Turner not only applied the brakes on the scoring but saw the back of Chris Atkinson (46), Whitworth (21), Greg Keywood (7) and Syme (6) as they got through nine overs apiece.
Warley’s innings had taken a distinct turn for the worse but the shackles came off as Josh Graham, Carl Fletcher and Silkstone leaked runs to Shazad and James Whitworth, who added 97 before the latter sliced a Jack Gledhill delivery to Liam Turner on the cover boundary.
Shazad was heading for a century when his attractive innings was ended in unfortunate style, eighth out with the total on 237. The returning Whippey speared in a yorker which knocked him off his feet and Shazed, unaware of where the ball was and unsure whether to run, had his stumps shied down by Metcalf’s swift throw from 15 metres.
Lusty late blows from Luke Duckitt and South African Cameron van Rensberg left Triangle with more on their plates at tea time than some of the foot-deep trifle on offer at the extensive Copley buffet.
Duckitt’s lifting delivery accounted for Nathan Madden in the second over of Triangle’s reply, caught at slip, and Amjid Azam’s nagging length finally got the better of Adam Stocks, who lobbed a catch to mid-off in the ninth over, having failed to get off the mark. That made it 12-2.
The sweet-timing Silkstone and the patient Rodger set about repairing the damage and had added 51 before departing in quick succession to Syme. Rodger was caught at cover for 18 and Silkstone flicked the ball to square leg, having made 41.
Powerful hitters Carl Fletcher and Metcalf provided the next threat to Warley. They took the score to three-figures before Fletcher, much to his disgust, was adjudged stumped for 20.
Metcalf and Josh Graham (18) started to open up with Chris Atkinson, who bowled an over from each end, particularly suffering at the hands of the former, who raced to 57.
However, both were bowled by Syme in the same over and the pendulum had swung firmly back Warley’s way at 164-7.
Jack Gledhill had a life when two Warley players collided attempting to catch the same lofted ball and Whippey hit a six in each of four successive overs to keep the Triangle dream alive.
Play was held up for five minutes while the umpires investigated a disturbance in the far corner of the ground from the pavilion before Whippey’s edge into keeper Matthew Whitworth’s gloves in the 41st over all but sealed his side’s fate.
Triangle v Warley
WARLEY 279 for nine
C Atkinson c L Turner b Rodger 46
B Atkinson c Metcalf b Whippey 8
M Whitworth c Gledhill b Rodger 21
S hassan run out 86
G Keywood c Silkstone b Rodger 7
D Syme b D Turner 6
J Whitworth c L Turner b J Gledhill 34
A Azam c Silkstone b Gledhill 11
C van Rensberg not out 21
L Duckitt c & b Silkstone 17
F Khatana not out 0
Bowling: K Whippey 9-1-60-2, L Turner 5-1-32-0, G Rodger 9-3-25-3, D Turner 9-2-32-1, J Graham 3-0-27-0, C Fletcher 3-0-27-0, C Silkstone 2-0-20-0, J Gledhill 5-0-48-2.
TRIANGLE 253 for eight
N Madden c Keywood b Duckitt 1
A Stocks c Khatana b Azam 0
G Rodger c Keywood b Syme 18
C Silkstone c Atkinson b Syme 41
C Metcalf b Syme 57
C Fletcher st Whitworth b van Rensberg 20
J Graham b Syme 18
K Whippey c M Whitworth b Keywood 45
J Gledhill not out 30
L Turner c Duckitt b Keywood 1
D Turner not out 0
Bowling: A Azam 9-3-26-1, L Duckitt 9-2-45-1, C van Rensberg 9-1-36-1, D Syme 7-1-39-4, C Atkinson 2-0-33-0, G Keywood 9-1-61-1.