Bierley make most of second bite of cherry

East Bierley lifted the Priestley Cup for the second-time in three seasons when they defeated Manningham Mills by 30 runs at Spen Victoria yesterday.

Defeat was hard on Mills as they had reduced East Bierley to 99-6 in the original game three weeks ago before play was washed out.

This time they put up a brave fight, but it wasn’t quite enough as East Bierley held their nerve to clinch victory.

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Overseas player Noman Ali typified the spirit of the Manningham Mills side, and was deservedly named man of the match after taking 4-32 and making 40 with bat in hand.

East Bierley were indebted to skipper Lee Goddard and Andrew Rennison who both made 51 as their side recovered from 38-2 to post a total of 182 in a match reduced to 40 overs a side.

Mills lost a wicket in the first over of their reply when East Bierley’s Pakistan international Rao Anjum dismissed Farakh Hussain.

With dark clouds hovering over the ground, Mills became concerned that the outcome might be decided on run rate and a number of their batsmen perished trying to increase the tempo.

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The experienced Neil Gill, who was unusually wayward, was the man to profit with 4-39, but Mills were kept in the hunt by the bold strokeplay of Ali.

Once he was dismissed, spinners Kez Ahmed (2-28) Luke Jarvis (2-30) ensured that East Bierley closed out victory.

The decision to shorten the game was vindicated when heavy rain started falling immediately after the presentation ceremony.

England’s women just missed out on a clean sweep of their five-match Twenty20 series against West Indies, Juliana Nero ensuring a consolation win for the tourists at Arundel Castle.

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Having won the first four matches England were undone on the final ball of the match, Nero taking the required single off Anya Shrubsole to claim a three-wicket win.

England were asked to bat first and posted 139-7, Barnsley’s Katherine Brunt top-scoring with 35, one more than captain Sarah Taylor’s effort from No 3.

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