The experience of off-spinning all-rounder Azeem Rafiq, above, set up an eight-point victory for Yorkshire Academy as they despatched Doncaster by eight wickets in the Solly Sports ECB Yorkshire County Premier League.
The Academy lie second in the League on 148 points after 25 games – 19 behind League leaders York and 24 ahead of third-placed Harrogate. They complete their League programme next Saturday when they entertain Cleethorpes at Weetwood.
Overcast conditions at Weetwood yesterday meant that the winning of the toss by skipper Alex Lees was vital: he asked Doncaster to bat, and LewisStabler made a big breakthrough in the third over when Simon Widdup – who has scored over 1,000 runs runs this season – was caught behind by Barney Gibson.
The next over saw Josh Shaw send the other opener, Gareth Cox, back with still only 10 on the board, but a partnership of 49 by Stuart Guy and James Stuart improved matters. It was the introduction of Rafiq that disposed of Stuart for 28, scored in 33 balls.
Guy played an excellent innings until medium-pacer Ben Coad trapped him in front for 34 off 36 balls, including seven fours. 76-4, and Doncaster were struggling. Nicholas Wright was starting to build an innings, but a misunderstanding with Felix Odell left him stranded mid-pitch: 96-6.
Odell batted with confidence for his 25, but Rafiq’s experience proved too much for the tail. Odell slashed at Azeem, and was caught at first slip by Will Rhodes. Free and Jackson also fell to the off-spinner, while Karl Carver bowled Gosney with a quicker ball. Doncaster closed on 141, the last five failing to reach double figures. An early finish to the innings that was to mean a late tea.
Stuart bowled with pace at the Academy openers, but he conceded eight no-balls in his opening spell. He did have some success – having JonathanTattersall caught at second slip by Guy with the total on 46 – but the Academy had rattled up the runs in 4.4 overs.
Lees punished the bowling in his 38, which contained five fours and a six. He returned to the pavilion when he was caught at mid-wicket by Knowles off Stuart. Mosun Hussain played a patient knock with Rhodes as they added 50 in 59 balls, untroubled by the five Doncaster bowlers.
Solly Sports Yorkshire ECB County Premier League Yorkshire Academy CC 1st XI v Doncaster Town CC 1st XI
Saturday, September 07 2013 (12:00) at Weetwood, Leeds
Yorkshire Academy CC 1st XI Won By 8 wickets
Points: Yorkshire Academy CC 1st XI: 0 Doncaster Town CC 1st XI: 0
Yorkshire Academy CC 1st XI won toss and decided to field