Bradford League: Matthew Waite seals nail-biting win as Methley boost survival hopes

Matthew Waite bowling for Methley against Cleckheaton. Picture: Paul Butterfield
Matthew Waite bowling for Methley against Cleckheaton. Picture: Paul Butterfield

Methley’s fight to stay in the All Rounder Bradford League’s Premier Division picked up pace when they blew the relegation battle wide open with a thrilling two-run win over Cleckheaton.

On a day when the three teams above them all lost it has given Methley renewed hope and there is now just 18 points between ninth-placed Undercliffe and bottom team Methley with four games to play.

Yorkshire all-rounder Matthew Waite (5-46) and spinner Amir Hussain (4-53) took the bowling honours, but just as important to Methley’s nail-biting win was the 37 made by their young wicketkeeper Josh Neal.

He arrived at the crease with his side in trouble at 98-7 and made a crucial contribution that helped his side to post a total of 166.

Cleckheaton also found run scoring difficult when they batted. Opener Nick Lindley made 42 before Nick Walker (49) threatened to win the game until he was a victim of Waite with six runs needed. Waite then trapped Johnathan Whiteoak lbw to take the final wicket and Methley had secured 17 points for their win to move to within four of Lightcliffe.

Townville moved up to fourth place in the Premier after coming out on top against old rivals Wrenthorpe.

Richie Bresnan was their chief destroyer with 6-17, while his new-ball partner Conor Harvey bowled eight overs without conceding a run as he picked up three wickets.

Five batsmen were out for ducks as Wrenthorpe were shot out for only 32 after Townville had made 256-7.

Imran Rafique hit 10 fours and a six in a knock of 74 to top score while Harry Warwick contributed 55 and Harvey 35no, including four sixes.

Australian Tyson Freeman was in great form for Great Preston as they beat Brighouse by 59 runs to stay in the promotion hunt in the Conference.

Freeman smashed four sixes and 12 fours in a knock of 109 and with Oli Baron supporting with 50 Preston were able to post a 220-8 total.

Brighouse were then dismissed for 161 as Jacob Wright picked up 4-52 and there were two wickets each for Cullum Jordan and Lee Russell.

Methley seconds were indebted to all-rounders Jake Smart and Mohammed Usman for their four-wicket win over Cleckheaton in Second Teams Championship One.

Smart took 5-24 and hit 54no while Usman claimed 3-36 with the ball and scored 50 with the bat as Cleckheaton were kept to 144-9 and Methley won with four wickets to spare.

Great Preston seconds kept the pressure on the Second Teams Championship Two leaders with a nine-wicket win over Altofts.

David Illingworth (5-37) and Luke Kane (3-34) helped restrict Altofts for 146 before Richard White (68no) and Andy Clark (51no) ensured Preston sailed home.

Townville seconds lost by five wickets after being bowled out for 108. Lee Dobson (36) top scored.