Championship Division round-up - 11 September
Posted on 13th September 2021 at 19:31
Cleethorpes v Whiston Parish Church
It’s been a great year for the Lincolnshire clubs. In the last three years, both Appleby Frodingham and Cleethorpes have been relegated from the Premier League and now both have been promoted straight back. Appleby Frodingham have gone on to win the Premier League title this year and Cleethorpes, on Saturday, won the Championship – in style. Looking at their results it seems easy – 17 wins out of 20 completed games - but many of them have been tough, hard fought encounters with the scores relatively close. Early on, they lost to Barnsley 2nds, to Aston Hall and even nearly lost to bottom club Oughtibridge, but since their third loss on 26 June, they have won every match they have played, against every club in the division. The third loss was to Whiston and it was Whiston they faced again in the last game of the season. However, this was a different Whiston from the side that have romped through the league – no Andy Tomlinson (still suspended) and no Aamir Jamal. Those two have both got current batting averages over 65 and Jamal also tops the league bowling with 63 wickets and six five-or-more wicket hauls. Still, they have some very good players – especially youngsters Joe Norbury and Harry Paver – and this week Gareth Davis put himself back opening. Cleethorpes shrugged it off and scored their highest total of the season – 286-7. Tom Rollinson made 115, Sameera Sadamal (second highest run scorer in the division and second highest wicket taker) made 73. Joe Norbury took four wickets but went for plenty. When Whiston batted, Davis and Norbury put on 69 for the first wicket and Harry Paver scored 66, but that was largely it. Sadamal took the first three wickets, Alex Osmond the next four and Harry Costello picked up the tail. Whiston were all out for 188 and to compound their fears, Houghton Main were beating Rockingham; so Whiston will now have to wait for League deliberations on their twelve-point deduction for accumulated disciplinary issues to find out whether they will be promoted.
Cleethorpes 286-7 (50) Callum Carter 38, Sameera Sadamal 73, Tom Rollinson 115, Joe Norbury 4-88
Whiston PC 188 (44.5) Gareth Davis 36, Joe Norbury 34, Harry Paver 66, Harry Costello 3-22, Sameera Sadamal 3-43, Alex Osmond 4-11
Cleethorpes (12pts) beat Whiston Parish Church (0) by 98 runs
Houghton Main v Rockingham Colliery
Houghton have been determinedly following in the shadow of Cleethorpes and Whiston all season, sometimes leading when the others slipped up, but mostly they have been third and scrapping hard to stay there. Michael Bates and Imran Khan have taken nearly 100 wickets between them. Connor Fisher has scored over 600 runs, and Michael Brown and Brent Law over 500 but it has been team efforts that have kept them going. They knew they had to win on Saturday against Rockingham (and Whiston had to lose) so they won the toss and batted. Michael Brown made 52 and he and Brent Law put on 62 for the first wicket. Connor Fisher kept up the momentum, as did Matty Bowering, and others chipped in, including Rockingham with 43 extras, so when time and wickets ran out simultaneously, they had 235. Tony Munyonga took 6-60. Rockingham have had a pretty good season themselves, without ever quite threatening to break into the leading group – but Saturday was not their best of days. Harry Grindle made 40, putting on 63 with Tony Munyonga (28) for the second wicket, but Houghton (with a whiff of the scores from Cleethorpes) were on a high and not to be put down. No other Rockingham batsman was allowed to score more than six, as Michael Bates (6-24) and Matty Bowering (3-25) ran through the rest of the team, bowling them all out for 86. Like Whiston, Houghton Main will have to wait for League deliberations on promotion, while Rockingham slip down to sixth.
Houghton M 235 (50) Michael Brown 52, Connor Fisher 36, Matty Bowering 30, Tony Munyonga 6-60
Rockingham C 86 (32) Harry Grindle 40, Michael Bates 6-24, Matty Bowering 3-25
Houghton Main (12pts) beat Rockingham Colliery (0) by 149 runs
Conisbrough v Aston Hall
Aston Hall’s season looked really bright at the start, with every hope of promotion, but it has unravelled during the year and losing to Sprotbrough (whom they had beaten twice in the league) in the Whitworth Cup Final the previous Sunday must have left them feeling pretty dejected going into the last match with Conisbrough. Conisbrough put them in and they were soon 25-4. Ali Ahmed got them up to 70 and a belligerent 50 by Adam Clark, supported by Johannes Bothma, restored some respectability at 149-8 by the close. Remarkably, Conisbrough did almost the same. Where Buddhika Sanjeewa and Scott Lowe had destroyed Aston’s early order, so Johannes Bothma tore into Conisbrough’s. Their first four batsmen were out for ducks and if it had not been for a generous helping of extras (including 27 wides by the end) there would not have been a run on the board when Will Scott came in. Another wicket and they were 25-5, with the 150 to win seeming a very long way off, but Scott and Joe Farmer dug deep in concentration and, facing 85 balls each, gradually turned the game around with an unbroken partnership of 125 - the stuff of Boys’ Own tales - Scott making 63 and Farmer 39. Bothma finished with 4-23 in ten overs and Aston Hall’s frustration must have been aching by the end. Conisbrough, who did not win a game till June have now ended fifth in the table – a fantastic achievement!
Aston Hall 149-8 (50) Adam Clark 50*, Buddhika Sanjeewa 3-48
Conisbrough 150-5 (34.3) Will Scott 63*, Joe Farmer 39*, Johannes Bothma 4-23
Conisbrough (12pts) beat Aston Hall (0) by five wickets
Sprotbrough v Sheffield Collegiate 2nds
The other issue of the day was who goes down with Oughtibridge. Sprotbrough have been the surprise of the season. Few at the start would have considered them relegation candidates. They have had a good side and have always been very competitive in the championship. They started quite well but then had a run of ten games with only one win, and seven successive losses in July and August, till beating Barnsley 2nds two weeks ago gave them a chance. Last Sunday they won the Whitworth Cup in fine style, beating Aston Hall. This week, they had to hope that Barnsley or Warmsworth would lose – and there was a fair chance of that as they were playing each other – and they then had the not inconsiderable task of beating fourth-placed Collegiate 2nds, brim full of ambitious young players. In the previous league game, in June, Collegiate had beaten them by six wickets, but Sprotbrough had won in the cup. So best foot first, they won the toss and batted. It did not start well – losing a wicket in the first over, but then Gordon Thomson and Daniel Wright put on a hundred together and Tom Kaye smashed a quick 33 and the dependable Ashley Langdale shepherded the tail to squeeze another thirty or so, to take them to 227. Matt Tyas and Ben Fielding shared eight of the wickets, but surprisingly there were none for Tate Miller. Not since 12 June had Sprotbrough put together such a total in the league – so there was a chance, especially as Collegiate’s success has been built around bowling sides out for considerably less – and so it proved. Adam Burkinshaw and Josh White put on 49 together, but Scott Mantovani and Michael Threapleton ripped through the middle order, reducing Collegiate to 88-7 and it took the Simpsons and Ben Fielding to bring a bit of respectability to the Collegiate score; but they were all out for 154 and, by the skin of their teeth, Sprotbrough had saved themselves.
Sprotbrough 227 (49) Gordon Thomson 64, Daniel Wright 37, Tom Kaye 33, Matthew Tyas 4-51, Ben Fielding 4-65
Sheffield C 2 154 (34.4) Adam Burkinshaw 46, Michael Threapleton 4-66, Scott Mantovani 4-50
Sprotbrough (12pts) beat Sheffield Collegiate 2nds (0) by 73 runs
Warmsworth v Barnsley Woolley Miners 2nds
So, with Sprotbrough winning, the second relegation candidate would be the loser of this match between Warmsworth and Barnsley, because, like Whiston, Barnsley have a 12-point deduction for disciplinary reasons hanging over them. Barnsley won the toss and batted. Nathan Swift gave them a good start – 56 for the first wicket – Zak Jahangir, who has played so well recently, fell to Richard Marshall and Limar Pierce removed Oliver Bennett shortly after. William Nicholson stuck around (till he was run out) but the hero was young William Chapman, who has scored runs for the Under-17s and a century for the 3rds, but his 50 for the 2nds on Saturday may prove to have been his most valuable. His partnership of 49 with his captain, Andrew Clayton, enabled Barnsley to reach 195-7 by the close. Warmsworth set off with spirit to overtake them. The first four, led by Rhys Mann (39) all had scores and, at 128-3, things seemed to be going well, but forty overs were gone and seventy needed in ten when established batsmen Limar Pierce and Paul Green both fell on the same score. Inevitably, the middle order could not sustain the pace and more wickets fell leaving Warmsworth 23 short on 172-9 at the end. Jay Smith with 3-32 in 13 overs (including the wicket of Rhys Mann) was Barnsley’s best bowler and the 12 points ensured that they stay up and Warmsworth drop back down to Division 1.
Barnsley WM 2 195-7 (50) Nathan Swift 38, William Chapman 50
Warmsworth 172-9 (50) Rhys Mann 39, Liam Marshall 30, Jay Smith 3-32
Barnsley Woolley Miners 2nds (12pts) beat Warmsworth (2) by 23 runs
Wath v Oughtibridge War Memorial
From this, which was their last game in the Championship for now, Oughtibridge may well remember most the remarkable individual skills of the Wath players that somehow have not fully come together with a team outcome this year, in league or cup, but can be pretty special seen at close quarters. Leg-spinner and man of Wath, Rob Barlow, bowled 15 overs, with 7 maidens and took 4-22, leaving Oughtibridge on 80-7 before Shahrukh Khan brought them back into the game with 64, leading partnerships of 43, 25 and 25 for the last three wickets, and setting Wath a target of 173. Then, after Wath had themselves lost early wickets, Bradley Williams (the third most prolific batsman in the division) struck his third hundred of the year – an unbeaten 109 in 91 balls – and, first with Luke Roddison (34), then with Jonathan Plater overtook Oughtibridge’s score in just 31 overs. Sadly, Oughtibridge had no answer to the questions these posed, but I am sure they will, at some time in the future, and then they will return to the Championship to ask questions of their own. Wath move up to seventh.
Oughtibridge WM 173 (48.4) Shahrukh Khan 64, Rob Barlow 4-22
Wath 175-4 (31.1) Bradley Williams 109*, Luke Roddison 34
Wath (12pts) beat Oughtibridge War Memorial (0) by six wickets
By Richard Storer
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