During this season, we will be taking a look at leagues from around Yorkshire, starting with the Bradford Premier League.

Bradford Premier League

Former Yorkshire County Championship winner Gary Fellows scored a 108-ball 103 as Hanging Heaton secured a thumping victory over Methley on the opening day of the Bradford Premier League on Saturday.

Fellows, who played 12 games for the county on the way to the 2001 title, underpinned his side’s 352-8 from their 50 overs, also including a belligerent 57 from captain Ben Kohler-Cadmore.

They then bowled their hosts out for 167 inside 35 overs, with Callum Bethel claiming 6-55 from 10.5 overs to help secure a 185-run success.

While Fellows hit one of two opening day centuries in the BCL’s top division, team-mate Bethel returned the best bowling performance on a day when 2019 champions Woodlands got their title defence off to a winning start in a thriller at Townville.

All matches were played without spectators in attendance, something this particular fixture did not deserve.

Woodlands opted not to play any cricket during last summer’s Coronavirus-enforced shortened season, but they got back on the winning trail quickly – but not without alarm.

Ritchie Bresnan – Tim’s brother – claimed three wickets with the new ball to reduce the visitors to 6-4, but New Zealand first-class pro Brad Schmulian’s 62 and 67 for Scott Richardson ensured they were in the game when bowled out for 168. Bresnan finished with 4-27 from nine overs.

In reply, Townville were well placed at 101-3 and then 148-6, but spinners Chris Brice (left-arm) and Kez Ahmed (off-spin) claimed four wickets apiece and got the champions over the line in the penultimate over.

Opener and captain Lee Goddard hit a superb 123, with 19 fours and a six, as New Farnley comfortably chased 243 to beat Cleckheaton by eight wickets.

Hanging Heaton and New Farnley both claimed 20 points apiece to sit at the top of the embryonic table. The only other team to secure that haul was Pudsey St Lawrence, Jordan Thompson’s club side.

Like Hanging Heaton, Pudsey also topped 300 with the bat. At their Tofts Road home, they posted 307-7 from 50 overs, riding on an opening stand of 164 between Mark Robertshaw (91) and Charlie Best (66).

In reply, Farsley were bowled out for 210 inside 43 overs, with Chris Marsden claiming 5-66 from 15 overs in a 97-run win.

Bradford and Bingley eased Morley aside, chasing down 179 to win by seven wickets with almost 17 overs to spare.

Bradley Reeve claimed a superb 4-27 from 15 overs as hosts were limited to 178-8 from 50 overs, including a top-score of 31 from opener James McNichol.

In reply, Kyme Tahirkheli and opening partner Will Luxton (37) killed the game by sharing 103, with the former’s 84 the standout. Luxton is on Yorkshire’s Academy and played in the pre-season friendly against Durham’s first team.

And, in a game reasonably similar to the above, Wrenthorpe triumphed over Batley by six wickets chasing down 146 with nearly 24 overs remaining.

Star man Matthew Race claimed four wickets and Oliver Kilburn three as visitors Batley were bowled out for 145. Wrenthorpe then survived a wobble at 30-3 as Race capped off a very productive day with 39 not out.

He shared an unbroken 68 for the fifth wicket with Sam Wigglesworth, who top-scored with 44 not out.

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