Theakston Nidderdale League: Masham up to second after five wins on the bounce

Helperby celebrate a wicket for Dan Marston, centre, during Saturday's victory over Spofforth. Picture: Caught Light Photography
Helperby celebrate a wicket for Dan Marston, centre, during Saturday's victory over Spofforth. Picture: Caught Light Photography

Five successive victories have taken Masham up to second place in the Theakston Nidderdale League Division One table, just five points behind leaders Ouseburn.

On Saturday, Phil Newton’s men managed to restrict struggling Knaresborough Forest to a paltry 86/9 from their 45 overs, Andy Heard taking three wickets.

Nathan Kleinig (47 not out) then led Masham to 87/2 in reply, helping his team complete an eight-wicket triumph inside 33 overs.

Ouseburn stay on top of the pile following a seven-wicket success over Hampsthwaite at Lightmire Lane.

Some fine bowling from Chris Morrison (4-28) and Tom Parker (3-24) meant that the away side could only make it to 133/8, Paul Taylor top-scoring with 32.

Jamie Bryant then struck 50 not out to take the defending champions to 136/3 in 30 overs.

Birstwith lost ground in the title race, dropping down to third position after a 36-run home reverse at the hands of Darley.

Jamie Sands (90) starred for the visitors, while Brad Stephens (55) offered excellent support in a first innings total of 250.

Chris Base was the pick of the Birstwith attack with 4-64 and Pete Hardisty grabbed 3-40.

In reply, Craig Robinson smashed a quickfire 75 and Tom Croston hit 47, but the hosts slumped from 162/3 to 214 all out as Joe Furniss and Chris Gill each snapped up four-wicket hauls.

Fourth-placed Helperby remain within touching distance of the summit courtesy of a 145-run crushing of bottom side Spofforth.

Luis Rees Hughes (63), Dylan Steyn (55) and Matt Cavanagh all struck half-centuries, while Joss Spillman chipped in with an unbeaten 42 to guide the high-flyers to 237/5.

A nightmare start to their reply saw Spofforth reeling at 12/7 at one point, Dan Marston wreaking havoc with a stunning spell of 5-28.

James Roberts (27) offered some resistance, but the home team were eventually bundled out for 92 with Alistair Darnell (3-13) mopping up the tail.

Burton Leonard made a return to winning ways, beating West Tanfield by a five-wicket margin.

Stuart Clark (65) and Sam Able (54) compiled an excellent 109-run stand for the second wicket to move Tanfield into a fantastic position at 112/2.

The home side’s middle and lower order failed to fire, however, and they ended up on 170/8, Tom Stanley claiming 4-31 and Sam Crompton 3-42.

An undefeated 60 from Michael Wray and Sam Crompton’s 58 then got Burton to 171/5 with more than three overs to spare, despite 2-28 from Andy McIntyre.

Second-from-bottom Alne remain nine points from safety and deep in trouble after a nine-wicket loss to Goldsborough.

Rich Henley’s run-a-ball 31 was the highlight of the men from the Magic Circle’ 154/8, Jarrod McPhee taking 3-52 with the ball.

Openers Mike Cockle (71 not out) and Damon Ive (51) both looked in decent touch as ‘Borough set about their run-chase, easing their side to a five-point return inside 30 overs.

Studley Royal went top of the second division standings, humbling relegation-threatened Newby Hall in the process.

A devastating spell of bowling by Tom Hixon saw him take no fewer than eight wickets as rock-bottom Hall were blown away for just 17, five of their batsmen departing without troubling the scorers.

Michael Litterbach did his bit with 2-11 and Royal then knocked off the required runs in 5.4 overs for the loss of just a solitary wicket.

Hall are in danger of being cast adrift at the foot of the table, and now find themselves 19 points shy of safety.

By contrast, leaders Royal sit five points clear of second-placed Wath & Melmerby, who climbed one position courtesy of their 74-run win over Scotton.

Bobby Hilton’s troops made 212/8 batting first, then got rid of their hosts for 138.

Blubberhouses were knocked off top spot when they failed to chase down Dacre Banks’ score of 201/9.

Stephen Ellison (75) was the mainstay of that innings, receiving handy support from Mohammed Ali (45) as Aamir Rehman and Qamar Ayub captured four wickets apiece.

Blubberhouses’ top order was then ripped apart by Waqas Rasheed (5-25) and Shaun Marshall (2-48), leaving them looking dead and buried at 64/8.

A defiant 86-run partnership between Neil Dickinson (40) and Stephen Kirkpatrick (39 not out) gave the title-chasers some hope, but in the end they were sent back to the pavilion 51 runs short on 150.

A stunning century from Matt Varley laid the foundations for Bishop Thornton’s 42-run triumph over Raskelf.

Varley plundered 115 before being run out, Jack Kellett adding 26, while Rob Sigsworth took 3-36 for the away team.

Sigsworth also impressed with the bat, striking 53 in reply in addition to Barry Clark’s 40, but it was to be Varley who won the battle of the all-rounders, effecting a trio of dismissals to help get rid of Raskelf for 192.

Ripley dropped into the relegation zone when they were dismissed for 92 chasing Pateley Bridge’s 121 all out.

Colin Chadwick was Bridge’s leading light, snapping up 4-12 with ball in hand as the home batsmen struggled to find any fluency.

Earlier, Jonny Goldsbrough’s innings of 46 had helped the Badgers to a reasonable total in the face of some excellent bowling from Bob Brown (3-20) and Wayne Grant (3-28).

Climbing above Ripley and out of the bottom two are Burnt Yates, who bowled Markington out for 70 thanks largely to the efforts of Dominic Taylor (5-19).

Tom Lloyd got to 26 for Markington, but that was as good as it got for the hosts who were finished off by 33 not out from opening bat Jason Chyer as Yates cruised to 71/4 and registered a first win in four attempts.