Chester Boughton Hall have slipped down to third in the Cheshire County Cricket League after a surprise defeat to tenth -placed Alderley Edge on Saturday, with Hyde taking over the lead on 284 points. Nantwich are just a point behind in what now looks like a three-way tussle for the title. Alderley Edge’s surprise victory lifts them out of the relegation zone at the expense of winless Grappenhall. Oulton Park occupy the other relegation spot.
Glen Batticciotto (Nantwich) continues to be the league’s leading run-scorer and has a 224-run cushion over second placed Louis Bentley. Batticciotto has scored 320 runs this month including centuries against Toft and Oxton, while Bentley also has a century against Toft to his name. Third placed Warren Goodwin is among this month’s other centurions with an unbeaten 149 against Neston to his name.
Scott Kirwin (Hyde) and James Warrington (Nantwich) are still comfortably the league’s leading wicket-takers with 44 and 40 wickets apiece respectively. Kirwin is one of four bowlers to have taken two five-wicket hauls in July – the others being Alex Kegg (Chester Boughton Hall), Rob Jones (Toft) and Andrew Birley (Oxton). Mark Warnes has the league’s best bowling figures with seven for 45 in Macclesfields win over Alderley Edge.
Ormskirk and Leigh are the teams to beat in the Liverpool & District Cricket League and sit atop the table with 227 and 209 points respectively. Last month’s second placed team, Colwyn Bay, have slipped down to seventh after losing four of their five games with New Brighton moving up to third. Northop Hall and Newton-le-Willows remain in the relegation zone with Hall’s win over Ormskirk the only positive for either team.
James Cole (Northern) is the league’s new leading run-scorer with 584 runs at an average of 64.89. Tim Buszard (Northop Hall), Dominic O’Brien (Lytham) and Michael Swart (Bootle) are the other men to have passed 500 runs. Dewayne Bowden (New Brighton)is the most prolific century-maker in July with scores of 106 against Northern and 108 against Colwyn Bay to his name.
Ashraf Nawab (New Brighton) is, as at the end of June, the league’s leading wicket-taker this season and now has 48 victims in total at an average of less than 13. His highlight this month has been figures of seven for 79 against Colwyn Bay. Michael Baer (Leigh) has taken two five-fers in July and moves up to second in the charts with 35 wickets. Christopher Liptrot (Highfield) and Thomas Bailey (Northern) are third and fourth.
Chester-le-Street and Blaydon are still locked in a two-horse race for the spoils in the North East Premier League with the former having a narrow ten-point advantage despite losing two games this month. South Northumberland and Benwell Hill continue to lead the chasing pack but they are some 48 points behind the leaders. South Shields and Gateshead Fell occupy the final two positions in the table with the latter having won only one match all season.
Durham wicket-keeper Mark Richardson remains the league’s leading run-scorer with 590 runs at an average of 84.29 in spite of only having scored 84 runs in July. Shaun Birbeck (Hetton Lyons) and Mark Stoneman (Blaydon), both prolific with the bat this month, are hot on his heels in second and third places. Stoneman and Andrew Smith (Chester-le-Street) are both twin centurions in July.
Benwell Hill’s Zohaib Khan is still the league’s most successful bowler with 32 wickets at an average of 19.66, with Christopher Varley (Blaydon) and Ryan Pringle (Hetton Lyons) his nearest rivals. Pringle is the only man to have taken five wickets in an innings twice this month and has hauls of six for 42 against Chester-le-Street and five for 39 against Benwell Hill to his name.
St Annes are still the team to beat in the Northern Premier League and have 191 points from 19 games in 2011 with three wins from six games this month. Leyland continue to be their nearest challengers and are now just 13 points adrift. Lancashire Academy are at the foot of the table with only 67 points with Fleetwood just above them on 75.
Pieter Malan (Barrow) has passed 1000 runs for the season and is comfortably the league’s leading run-scorer with 1013 at an average of 84.42 including two centuries this month. Atiq uz-zaman (St Annes) is second, also with two centuries in July, and has 872 runs at 58.13. Brett Pelser and Luis Reece (both Leyland) are third and fourth respectively. Con de Lange (Blackpool) and Preston skipper Lukman Vahaluwala are the month’s other centurions.
Dinuka Hettiarachchi continues to be in unstoppable form for St Annes in 2011 and has a scarcely believable 78 wickets – 27 of them in July – at an average of 10.87 to his name. Lukman Vahaluwala and Anwar Ali continue to be his nearest rivals with 62 and 55 scalps apiece. Between them the trio have seven five-wicket hauls to their credit in July alone and have dominated the wicket taking this month.
© Cricket World 2011