By Jamie Harrison
Jiveshen Pillay smashed an impressive 162 from 146 balls as bottom club Thongsbridge tested the title credentials of Moorlands.
Thongsbridge set Moorlands a hefty target but the Mirfield-based side showed their resilience and determination to win through with four balls to spare.
Title rivals Skelmanthorpe barely broke sweat accounting for Scholes while Mohammed Suleman gave Mirfield Parish’s survival chances a boost by defeating Honley.
The form team of the division, Almondbury Wesleyans, had enough in the tank to see off Kirkburton and Hoylandswaine barely changed gear in their victory at home to Shepley.
Mirfield Parish Cavaliers v Honley
Mohammad Suleman turned in his best ever score for Mirfield Parish Cavaliers to wrestle their match at home to Honley away from their grasp to pull them closer into trouble. Relegation-threatened Parish looked to have it all to do when chasing Honley’s 235, especially after they slumped to 143-7 with Joel Size taking 4-61 for the visitors. Suleman, whose best score this season was 37, proved an unlikely hero after he spectacularly drilled 87.
Earlier in the day, Honley’s Lewis Evans hit 84 and his 143-run partnership with Eddie Wilson had put them in charge but after Nick Sharp removed both men, Tom Heaton hit back by claiming five wickets to leave room for Suleman’s valiant second-innings performance.
Moorlands v Thongsbridge
A top versus bottom tussle saw Moorlands nip home following an enthralling chase at home to luckless Thongsbridge. The away side tested Moorlands’ title credentials by setting a daunting first innings total of 303-6, helped undoubtedly by Jiveshen Pillay’s searing 162 scored from 146 balls, containing 17 fours and 6 maximums.
Opening partner Ben Raven-Hill was practically a spectator when making 40 and they put on 132 runs for the first wicket. Nadim Hussain and Eddie Walmsley’s tireless work with the ball saw an even share of six wickets and in hindsight, brought the large total within range.
Shoukat Ali and Amogh Bhatkal both had identical scores of 61 to underpin their chase, but the away side eyed up an unlikely win when Ben Balmforth’s three wickets brought them back into the game.
Rearguard actions from several Moorlands batsmen kept them in the hunt and Hussain (29no) and Jon Rudge forged a steely understanding with their 55 run partnership taking them to 304-8 with four balls to spare.
Scholes v Skelmanthorpe
Skelmanthorpe put in an accomplished performance at Scholes to remain in contention, with two of their change bowlers snatching the headlines. Kian Schwartz bagged five wickets and Sam Tyas helped out with 4-26 to demonstrate their strength in depth.
Scholes were barely let out of the traps, being dismissed for a below par 148. It took Skelmanthorpe 30 overs to leisurely overtake their target with Jack Newby carving an unbeaten 61 for the title contenders who replied with 150-2.
Almondbury Wesleyans v Kirkburton
Almondbury Wesleyans stayed in fine fettle after they downed another out-of-form team with Kirkburton scuttled at Kaye Lane. Daniel Moorhouse continued his hot streak by claiming 4-51 to make it 15 wickets from the last four matches. Matt Henshaw’s 4-48 helped keep the visitors in check as Kirkburton were bowled out for 178. The home side shrugged off a sluggish start to their reply by falling to 28-3.
Matt Schubert and Nathan Kenworthy then steadied the ship and Matthew West’s 48 in the middle order gave their innings crucial impetus. Wes eventually inched home on 179-8 with Roscoe Tahttil and Tom Burkinshaw taking three wickets each for ‘Burton.
Shepley v Hoylandswaine
Duncan Brown swallowed up four catches behind the stumps for Hoylandswaine and then went on to make a classy 79no to comfortably defeat visiting Shepley. Spinner Max Morley snared 5-41 as Swaine ran through Shepley who were dismissed for 153. Asif Iqbal’s brisk 56no reinforced their reply with Brown’s busy contribution finishing the nine wicket win off nicely.
Barkisland and Broad Oak were two teams left frustrated to become the only Premiership match falling victim to the weather.