South Yorkshire: Consistency pays off for Elsecar with title

Elsecar started the season moderately, but their consistency since, and their five-wicket victory over hosts Wath on the last day of the season, has earned them their 18th championship of the top flight.

The Armroyd Lane men sent Wath back for 131, teenager Sam Drury top bat with 49, with Luke Townsend bagging 5-36 and Iftikhar Afzal 3-40, then eased to 132-5.

Whitley Hall, hoping to hear of an Elsecar defeat, reached 266-8 with Sam Chatterton cracking 97, with 15 fours, and Jaco Castle slamming 86, with 13 boundaries, guests Norton Oakes back in the pavilion for 193, Daniel Owen hitting 67 and Alex Hibbert 43, main Whitley bowler Jim Tasker, with 6-66.

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Wickersley, whose points deductions for bad conduct cost them the title, whipped out Coal Aston for 96, Haidar Jahangir claiming 5-21, to win by nine wickets, Paul Lund 45no.

Hallam stopped Aston Hall at 143, junior Nathan Ward 46no, and replied with a battling 144-9, having to thank Nick Dymock for his late 56, the Aston bowlers Juan Grobbelar, 5-74, and Rob Ward, 3-14.

Whiston made their trip to Houghton Main pay off when making 201-9, opener Andy Tomlinson 48, and dismissing Houghton for 177, Scott Jones grabbing 7-34, best bowling figures in the top flight.

Elsecar B completed a satisfying double for the club when making 204 and holding Oughtibridge to 182-8 in Division Two, opener Adrian Meadows hitting 68 and James Swallow 50no.

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There were just two century-makers on the final day of the season, Whiston B’s teenager Joe Stickland hammering 109, with 11 fours,against Thorpe Hesley in Division Three, and in the same section, Sheffied United’s James Smith blasted an unbeaten 107 in the win at Conisbrough B.

Two of the finest bowling performances of the day came from Darfield’s Paul Wilkinson (he snapped up 9-19 in the game against Conisbrough B in Division One) and Phoenix B’s Tom Wilson (9-14 against Frecheville B in Division Four).

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