Manningham Mills snatched the second promotion place on a dramatic final day of the JCT 600 Bradford League Second Division programme following their seven wicket home win against Keighley.
It all came down to bonus points as the 19 points they gained from their win enabled Mills to finish three points in front of third placed Lightcliffe, who could gain only 16 points from their seven wicket victory at Brighouse – both teams began the day level on 272 points.
Despite their defeat, the match was a personal triumph for Brighouse skipper Paul Cummins, who crowned an outstanding season by passing 1,000 runs after making 131 out of his side’s 194 for six. His innings contained 20 fours.
Former Yorkshire batsman, opener Chris Taylor guided Lightcliffe to victory with 96 not out, but his efforts were in the light of the Mills result.
Mills bowled out Keighley for 199 with Zeeshan Qasim taking 4-42, but a last wicket stand of 81 between Ashley Robinson (20) and Ross Towler (44 not out) enabled the home side to pick up a fourth batting point as they raced to victory in 36.5 overs with Gulsheraz Ahmed making 115, including five sixes and 12 fours.
This means that both the relegated teams – Mills and champions Hanging Heaton – have been promoted back to the First Division at the first attempt.
Hanging Heaton ended the season with 107-run win over Bowling Old Lane to dash Old Lane’s hopes of promotion. An unbroken eighth wicket stand of 133 between Alan Mynett and former Yorkshire and Derbyshire player Mark Lawson, who has been playing with Kent this season, enabled Hanging Heaton to reach a formidable 274 for seven, Lawson making 93 and Mynett 73.
Skipper John Carruthers then took 5-48 as Old Lane were bowled out for 167 with Mubtada Akhtar making a defiant 61.
So, Hanging Heaton have returned to the top flight in spectacular fashion, finishing the season with 19 wins out of 22 matches played and only two defeats and 365 points, 74 more than second placed Mills.
Hartshead Moor gained 20 points from their 163-run win over next to the bottom Idle. Simon North with 87 not out was top scorer in Hartshead’s total of 244 for seven as Dave Pearce took 5-59.
Joel Pollard (3-44), Tom Manvell (3-11) and Craig Woodhead (3-1) each took three wickets as Idle were shot out for 81.
Off spinner David Nebard took 7-30 as Morley beat bottom club Great Horton by 84 runs. Opener James McNichol top scored with 55 in Morley’s 223 for six. Horton were then bowled out for 139.
Windhill beat Spen Victoria by 23 runs in a low scoring match at Busy Lane. Adam Brown took 4-25 as Windhill were bowled out for 141, but Spen fared even worse in reply. Opener Matthew West led the way with 57, but received little support as Spen were bowled out for 118, Awais Ejaz taking 5-48 and Hanzaq Mir 4-10.
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