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Reigning champions Thackley may pay for lack of killer instinct
Thackley are paying a high price for not being able to finish off teams they are dominating and it looks likely to cost them the defence of their Aire-Wharfe League title.
On another weekend ravaged by rain – more than a quarter of Aire-Wharfe games have been lost to weather so far this season – Thackley managed to get their match against Kirkstall to a finish. But once again they fell just short of victory.
As the season moves towards the halfway mark at the weekend, they have managed to ease themselves into the top half of the table and their best hopes appears to be a second half in which the sun shines and they turn draws into wins.
Majid Khan (35) and Yaser Ali (46) gave Thackley a decent foundation with a third-wicket stand of 72 before Joe Ollerenshaw (43no) gave good support to Mahir Ali, who smashed an unbeaten 59 in 36 balls to take his side to 225-5.
With opener Lee Gordon (65) looking dangerous, Kirkstall made a solid start but Nasser Jamal (4-41) and Andy Stothart (2-33) began to make inroads, and when Gordon and their other dangerman Scott Harniess were dismissed in quick succession to make it 129-6, Thackley looked home and dry.
But they hadn’t reckoned on No 8 Paul Malone (38no), who, together with last man Oliver Metcalfe, managed to bat out the last three overs.
Robert Britton (60) and Joe Pleasance (38) helped Division Two leaders Green Lane to 165-6 off their 40 overs but Bardsey put up stiff resistance, and a half-century from Eddie Clayton helped them restrict Lane to four points.
Andrew Doidge (4-21) and George Myers (3-30) restricted Bolton Villas to 129, and the game hinged on a dropped catch with Rawdon at 77-5.
Joe Loorham was the man put down and he went on to see his side to victory with an unbeaten 43.
The most exciting finish also came in this division when North Leeds, needing five to win off the final over against Knaresborough, lost four wickets and tied.
Majid Inayat smashed a season-best 113 as Silsden scored 204-6 and prevented runaway Division Three leaders Colton opening up an even greater advantage.
But there was no joy for Horsforth, who were bowled out for 150 after an unbeaten 116 from Michael Richmond helped New Rover to 206-4 in just 35 overs.