DUNCAN ALLAN, a Kenya international all-rounder, had an influential debut for champions Shepley, who defeated promoted Meltham by 58 runs.
Allan, born in Brisbane and educated at Cranleigh School in Surrey, made a half-century and took 3-42. Replying to Shepley’s 265-7, Meltham threatened to deny the champions an outright win until they lost their last wicket with two balls left. Vinod Minhas, Meltham’s overseas all-rounder, made 54 and took 4-73.
Kirkburton, last season’s runners-up, got off to a losing start at the other promoted club, Slaithwaite, who won by 26 runs.
Half-centuries by Iqbal Khan and Usran Malvi failed to rescue Kirkburton, while Chris Kilner was Slaithwaite’s best performer, following up an innings of 36 by taking 4-42.
Arron Lilley hit an undefeated 139 for Delph & Dobcross, who overcame hosts Hoylandswaine by six wickets. Lilley had an unbroken stand of 150 with Jamshad Ahmad, who contributed 35. Captain Greg Buckley, who has switched from Kirkburton, made 50 for the winners and Ryan Robinson’s unbeaten 110 could not save Hoylandswaine.
Alex Scholefield has moved from Skelmanthorpe to Barkisland and he played a major role in defeating his old club by 103 runs. Scholefield was Barkisland’s top scorer with 46 as they totalled 182-6. The right-arm seamer then took 6-25 in 14 overs and Skelmanthorpe were ousted for 79 in the 29th over.
Honley won by seven wickets at Elland with Max Joice smashing a six and 15 fours in an undefeated 96.
Bilal Khiljee also struck 96 for Shelley in their 100-run victory over Holmfirth. Khiljee hit nine fours and three sixes and then took 4-14 in 9.4 overs.