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Hanging Heaton are top dogs in Yorkshire

— 25 September 2017

The best of the Bradford League toppled defending champions Wakefield Thornes from the Yorkshire League South in a thrilling play-off final at Headingley today.

Hanging Heaton defended their 50-over total of 231 to win by three runs against a Thornes side who won this title in Abu Dhabi last year.

Wakefield were well placed at 155-2 after 37 overs with Yorkshire’s Jared Warner on the way to a measured 68 opening the batting.

But he was one of three wickets for miserly spinner Muhammed Rameez, who shone with 3-47 from 15 overs and contributed to the target becoming 14 off the last over.

Experienced former county pro David Stiff bowled it, with Thornes finishing on 228-6, sparking joyous scenes amongst the Bradfordians.

Yesterday, they had come through a semi-final battle with York at Headingley, while the defending champions had beaten Great Ayton at Scarborough.

Today, Sri Lankan spinner Akila Isanka led the way with 4-53 from 13 overs in Hanging Heaton’s 231, while Warner was one of three men who struck twice.

It was a weekend to remember for ex-Yorkshire batsman Callum Geldart, who stood out for Hanging Heaton.

Geldart played two first-class matches for the White Rose in 2010 and 2011.

He hit an unbeaten 90 off 79 balls against York and backed it up with a more measured 85 off 109 today.

Thornes will no doubt look back on this match with huge regret given their solid start with the bat.

Warner, whose seam bowling is his primary asset, was a calming presence at the crease as they reached the 30-over mark at 108-2, needing 123 more.

That became 164-3 at 40 overs, needing 67.

With Warner, who shared 71 for the third wicket with Joe Cook (31) still there, Thornes were on top.

But Rameez was their biggest threat.

His first nine overs only cost 19 runs before he struck three key blows, including Warner lbw, as the score slipped to 184-5 in the 44th.

Sixth-wicket pair Faisal Irfan (34 not out) and Greg Wadsworth took things to the wire.

But, unfortunately for Thornes, Stiff bowled Wadsworth with the second ball of the final over as Hanging Heaton edged home.

Reflecting a bit more on the routes through to the final, Thornes made it to Headingley with a thumping 183-run win over South Durham North Yorkshire champions Great Ayton at Scarborough.

David Toft underpinned their commanding 273-7 with a superb 102, while Warner (40) and Matthew Jordan’s 67 were other notable contributions.

Great Ayton then slipped to 90 all out, with spinner Steve Morgan’s 4-14 from four overs aided by Irfan’s impressive 3-14 from six.

In the Headingley semi-final, Hanging Heaton beat a York side including Yorkshire first-team duo Jack Leaning and Matthew Waite by 122 runs.

Hanging Heaton amassed a play-off record score of 312-4 thanks largely to Geldart’s dynamism, including a switch hit six off Leaning’s off-spin.

Leaning and Waite shared four wickets and were both out cheaply in the chase.

Geldart was backed up by Gary Fellows (45), Joe Fraser (48) and James Kean’s unbeaten 52 before new ball pair Tom Chippendale and Stiff struck three times apiece as York were bowled out for 190.