Match Reports 2015 1st XI


Saturday August 29th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Tickhill 1st XI (home), SYCL Championship

Whitley won toss and chose to field.

Tickhill 1st XI: 233 for 8 (50 overs). Rennison 48, Fiddles 87. Extras 17 (3lb, 8w, 1nb, 5penalty runs). Bacon 5-1-24-0; Longhurst 8-0-32-0; B. Webster 15-4-43-2; Tasker 14-2-63-4; Batty 3-0-19-0; T.Fletcher 5-0-44-2.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 229 all out (50 overs). Milburn 20, Siddall 1, Wilson 2, Tasker 28, Longhurst 20, A. Fletcher 70, Batty 15, Chatterton 39, Bacon 8, T. Fletcher 7, B. Webster 0no.

Fall: 5-22-24-50-98-134-209-209-224-229.

Alex Fletcher (70) and Sam Chatterton (39) added 75 for 7th wicket.

Tickhill won by 4 runs.

Note: In other matches in the Championship, Treeton beat Conisbrough by 9 wickets (7pts); Aston Hall beat Darfield by 109 runs (5pts); Wickersley beat Wath by 2 wickets (7pts). Topof table now looks like this:

1. Aston Hall.. P20 W13 L2 89pts;

2. Treeton……. P20 W12 L5 85pts;

3. WHCC……. P20 W11 L5 77pts;

4. Wickersley. P20 W11 L6 77pts;

5. Tickhill…… P20 W10 L8 70pts.


Saturday August 22nd

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Elsecar 1st XI (home), SYCL Championship

Elsecar won toss and invited Whitley to bat.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 262 for 7 dec (45.5 overs).Anthony Wilson 106 (9x4s, 7x6s); Jim Tasker 57; Extras 30. Wilson and Tasker 139 for 4th wicket; Wilson and Batty 57 for 5th wicket. Naveed 3-48; Hussain 2-96; Ivill 2-45.

Elsecar 1st XI: 23 for 2 (6.1 overs). Longhurst 2 for 7.

Match abandoned. Rain.

Very hot and sunny at the start of play. Later thunder, lighning, rainbows, Several heavy showers and then downpours.

The match between Treeton (top) and Aston Hall (second) was also abandoned when the scoreboard suggested a likely Treeton success.

So the positions at the top of the table are unchanged.

awaiting match report

Saturday and Sunday 15th & 16th August 2015



Saturday Blight and Sunday Atoning

By A Man on the Boundary

As match-day regulars at the club’s delightfully idyllic and compact ground on Cinder Hill Lane will confirm, summer weekends spent watching Whitley Hall Cricket Club’s 1st XI have invariably been enjoyable experiences in recent times, for the Wizards, as they are nicknamed, have enjoyed some remarkable triumphs over the past 15 years and gained recognition as one of the top clubs in the South Yorkshire Senior Cricket League.

It would be wrong to suggest that Whitley supporters have become so accustomed to success that they now take it for granted, but certainly these days they tend to appear surprised or puzzled, or both, on those occasions when victory proves elusive.

In mid-August the 1st XI boast 11 wins from 17 Saturday matches, but three defeats in six games brought a touch of realism to the scene as the team prepared for a weekend featuring two fixtures that some say could make or break their season. At this stage, Whitley stood third in the SYSCL Championship, trailing leaders Aston Hall by two points and one point behind second-placed Treeton.

On Saturday, they just happened to be due a trip to Aston Hall, who seem to have come from nowhere to top the table. Apart from the significance of the outcome of this match in terms of the chase for the title, the fixture coincides with the cut-off point for the Yorkshire Council play-offs, with only the clubs filling the top two positions qualifying. So, only a win would be enough for the Wizards, who qualified and reached the final last year, to claim a place.  (For the moment we will put aside the debate on how this season’s final table will affect who plays where next summer).

Then, on Sunday comes the Whitworth Cup final in which Whitley meet Treeton, the club they beat at the same stage last year. This match should have been played in late July at Wickersley, but it was washed away when heavy rain fell on the morning of the fixture; and circumstances meant the game had to be switched to Elsecar –happily a venue not only more convenient for the Wizards, but one that has often been a lucky ground for them (Old-timers suggest that is at least partly due to the Baxter link –the late Ike Baxter having been a legend at both Whitley and Elsecar) .

*  *  *

Two comments often overheard when watching a cricket match are “It’s too many for us”, usually said when the speaker’s team is about to bat second facing a substantial total, and “It’s not enough”, a common complaint when your team, having batted first, doesn’t appear to have made enough runs to put the other side under pressure.

We heard both this weekend.

Saturday turned out to be a pleasant day, though one that went from sunny before the match to overcast almost as soon as play started, and the wide open spaces of the Green Lane ground at Aston proved rather chilly at times. (Mind you, as well as alcohol being on tap in the pavilion bar, hot chocolate is available for teetotallers.)

Whitley skipper Jim Tasker lost the toss, and the Wizards were invited to field –a decision that prompted some Aston supporters, assessing the state of the wicket, to suggest their captain may have erred in choosing to bat first. However, he was ultimately shown to be a wise young man, for, although Aston lost their first wicket on 14 and their second with only 25 on the board, the third-wicket pair, Matthew Cartwright and Nicholas Smit, ensured a frustrating afternoon for the visitors by hammering 226 runs. Smit’s 139 included six sixes and 13 fours, and Aston finished with 275 for five off their allotted 50 overs.

Inevitably, Whitley’s bowling figures did not make good reading. Tom Fletcher, who normally is something of a miser when it comes to conceding runs, saw his 14 overs cost 74 runs; Tasker’s six overs of spin leaked 43 runs; Liam Bacon’s one wicket from nine overs conceded 43 runs; Greig Batty “lost” 29 runs in three overs; and Neil Longhurst’s three wickets in 12 overs cost 66 runs.

It should be said that during the Aston innings an additional cause for concern emerged when skipper Tasker suffered what looked to be a rather nasty hand injury. “Bloody and ugly looking” someone said, referring to the injury rather than the popular chap enduring the pain. Fortunately, it later transpired that the finger at the root of the problem had not been broken, and, in the meantime, while displaying the level of bravery that might be expected from a man who bears a remarkable resemblance to the sort of battle-worn sea captain whose image used to appear on Player’s Cigarette packets, Jim managed to continue bowling and even to take a couple of catches. He never once said “Ouch!”. Indeed, he later batted and made 29 not out, and no doubt it seemed rather unjust that so much personal discomfort and doggedness should prove to have been without reward.

At the halfway stage in the game, more than one visiting supporter was heard to mutter (in a Yorkshire accent) “ That total, Ah think it’s too many for Our Lads”.

To cut a long story short, that proved to be the case. Whitley toiled through their 50 overs to finish with 169 for seven wickets. Australian Anthony “Prawn” Wilson top-scored with 60, but any pleasure in that was insignificant in the context of a 107-run win for Aston which left them six points clear at the top. Young Wilson, who always has “O/S” alongside his name on scorecards, later consoled himself with something rather stronger than his usual nightcap, Milo.

On the journey back to Whitley, even the news that defending champions Treeton had lost at Wickersley hardly raised a smile, for the Washfield Laners remained second in the table. That meant Whitley had been pipped to a Yorkshire Council play-off place by the narrowest of margins.

* * *

“Ah, well,” they said after Saturday’s setback, “Sunday is another day”, and while at home the roast beef and Yorkshire puddings were put on hold to be consumed on Monday, it was a time for Whitley supporters to re-charge the optimism batteries, load folding chairs, cushions, packed sandwiches, flasks of coffee and extra clothing (in case of a turn for the worse in the weather) into the car, and make an early start to ensure a place in the Elsecar club’s car-park. (Normally, there is ample space, but today there is not just a cup final happening, but a farmers’ market and craft fair is being staged down the road at the Heritage Centre, and, later, a brass band concert is taking place in Elsecar Park. So, before long the car-park is overflowing with vehicles, and Armroyd Lane resembles the A61 at peak hour, with stationary cars on both sides of the road, passing traffic struggling to move, and local residents resigned to again complaining about ‘living in a state of seige’).

Whitley, having won the Whitworth Cup eight times already and looking to make it three final victories on the trot and six wins in seven years, no doubt felt that the omens looked good when Captain Tasker, showing no signs of problems with that damaged finger, won the toss and said the Wizards would bat first.

Some Whitley folk had been hoping that there was truth in the rumour that Steve Foster, Treeton’s star man –an outstanding local cricketer who has won many a match almost single-handed down the years– would miss the match because he’d gone on holiday. But here ‘Mister Evergreen’ was, as large aslife, looking confident and obviously rarin’ to go as he opened the bowling from the pavilion end.

In the event, it was the pace of Muahmmid Attari, bowling from the Park end, that left a dent in Whitley’s confidence with two early wickets –both Matt Milburn, at 23, and Anthony Wilson, three runs later, being caught behind by Jamie Harrison.

Neil Longhurst (53), who has often thrived in previous finals, started out with the sort of confident batting that suggested he was ‘in the mood’ to play another significant role, and he went to 50 off 52 balls, dominating his third-wicket partnership with Chris Siddall before he, too, fell to a catch behind with the total on 105.

According to the match programme Adam Clarke reads gas meters for a living, but he can bowl a fair leg-break, too, for after claiming Longhurst’s wicket, he limited Tasker (0) to just two balls before hitting his stumps –an event that caused the Whitley skipper to look behind him wearing on his face a look of sheer disbelief.  “It’s usually me that’s bowling that sort of ball, young man,” he might have said had he not been so overwhelmed with dismay that he could barely draw breath. 105 for four.

Greig Batty (20) and Siddall added 31 for the fifth wicket, but, just when it seemed that they might threaten to seriously frustrate Treeton, ‘Batts’ fell victim to Greg Norton’s persistence from the Park end.

It was around this time, incidentally, that the pleasing strains of brass band music being played on the nearby bandstand first drifted across the cricket field, but it is not known whether what might have been a John Phillip Sousa march inspired Norton or distracted Batty. Whatever, the plain fact is that it was Norton calling the tune, clean bowling the Whitley all-rounder. 136 for five.

The innings had reached the 41st over and Whitley’s score had advanced to 155 when that man Foster was brought back on at the pavilion end and promptly bagged his first wicket –Alex Fletcher (7) providing Harrison with his fourth catch behind the stumps.

Six runs later, Attari (4-29), back at the Park end, bowled Sam Chatterton (4), and while soon afterwards Siddall’s painstaking innings saw him reach his 50 off the 100th ball he had faced, Liam Bacon (3) became Attari’s fourth victim with Whitley’s total on 172. Then one run later Foster snapped up the wicket of Ben Webster (0).

Eight more runs were added before, with Siddall having carried his bat for 64, Whitley’s innings ended on 181 for nine after 45 overs.

A modest total: “It’s not enough” said the pessimists over their tea-time cuppa. “Let’s wait and see.” replied the optimists. The optimists, however, appeared to be outnumbered –pessimism does sometimes tend to prevail in some parts of the Whitley crowd. Their philosophy can be summed up as “If you start out expecting nowt, everything you get is a bonus”.

Whitley knew that if Treeton’s openers, young Charlie Roebuck and the evergreen elder statesman Foster, were given the chance to really get going, they could destroy the Wizards’ attack, but the fourth ball of the innings brought a spectacular breakthrough when Liam Bacon induced Roebuck to offer a catch well taken by Batty –None for one!

Scott Cunningham (20) appeared to be settling in well and after 10 overs Treeton’s scoring rate was better than Whitley’s when the one-time junior Wizard was trapped leg-before by Tom Fletcher to make it 37 for two.

That was Fletcher’s only wicket in the innings, but, having suffered so badly at the hands of the Aston batsmen the previous day, ‘The Professor’, being something of a ‘Sunday bowler’, was back doing what he does best, playing the miser and “giving the batsmen nowt”; and his final analysis (9 overs 3 maidens one wicket for 12 runs) confirmed his part in slowing the Treeton run-rate, and emphasised (yet again) the significance of his contribution to a Whitley success story.

At 45 for two and after 16 overs, Longhurst gave way to Tasker at the Pavilion end, and soon after Treeton had passed the halfway stage on 64 for two (Whitley had been 77 for two at the same stage), Longhurst was in the right place at the right time to take the catch when the skipper induced a miscue from his opposite number, Gareth Davies (4).

Bacon came on for his second spell and, repeating his first spell success by getting a wicket in his initial over, captured the vital scalp of Foster (41), the Treeton man skying one to Longhurst to make it 68 for four. That was the moment when those Whitley supporters who had earlier frowned with a negative frustration suddenly regained the ability to smile.

At 86 Tasker claimed his second wicket, Wilson taking the catch that dismissed Paul Fenn, and two runs later Norton followed Fenn to the pavilion, bowled by Batty.

Whitley’s Gentle Giant then dismissed both Mirza and Cobb on 106, thanks to catches by Wilson and Sam Chatterton, followed up by taking the catch off Longhurst that ended Clarke’s brave innings, and, with the Wizards on the brink of victory, in the penultimate over of the innings it was Batty who struck again by capturing the wicket of Attari…with Bacon, on the boundary, claiming a slice of  Whitley Hall CC history by calmly taking a brilliant catch that sealed victory.

Within seconds Bacon disappeared from view as delighted team-mates advanced from all parts of the field and created a human heap of sheer happiness. Rather excessive for a Sunday? Not in Elsecar. Anyhow, when Liam eventually emerged exhausted but unscathed and smiling, his face might well have been described by his mother as ‘a picture’. His delight was subsequently quadrupled when he learned that match adjudicator and Elsecar hero ‘Gentleman’ Jason Meadows had chosen him as the Man of the Match. (Jason, by the way, did such a good job on the mike that it is rumoured he might take it up professionally when his cricketing days are over.)

By the time the celebrations on the ground had concluded, and hundreds of photographs of players and families had been snapped with and without the trophy — and been e-mailed or posted on Facebook– Armroyd Lane had returned to normal and lots of places had been vacated in the car park.

A good game, a good day for players and spectators. A victory for cricket and sport, a good advert for the South Yorkshire Senior Cricket League. Many thanks, Elsecar. Hard lines, Treeton. Well done Whitley…a case of  Saturday blight and Sunday atoning!

Keith Farnsworth

WHITWORTH CUP FINAL (at Elsecar). Whitley won toss and chose to bat. Result : Whitley Hall CC – 1st XI – Won by 41 runs. Whitley Hall:181-9 (45 overs). Treeton 140 all out (44 overs).

Whitley Hall CC – 1st XI: Matthew Milburn, ct Jamie Harrison b Muhammad Attari 20; Chris Siddall not out 64; Anthony Wilson ct Jamie Harrison b Muhammad Attari 0; Neil Longhurst ct Jamie Harrison b Adam Clarke 53; Jim Tasker b Adam Clarke 0; Greig Batty b Greg Norton 20; Alex Fletcher ct Jamie Harrison b Stephen Foster 7; Sam Chatterton b Muhammad Attari 4; Liam Bacon b Muhammad Attari 3;Ben Webster b Stephen Foster 0; Tom Fletcher not out 0. Extras 10 (3lb, 7nb).Total: 181-9. (45 overs).

Fall of Wickets: 23-1 Milburn; 26-2 Wilson; 105-3 Longhurst; 105-4 Tasker; 136-5 Batty; 155-6 A. Fletcher; 161-7 Chatterton; 172-8 Bacon; 173-9 Webster.

Bowling: Stephen Foster 9-0-32-2; Attari 9-1-29-4; Roebuck 4-1-17-0;Norton 9-1-44-1; Clarke 9-1-32-2; Cunningham 5-0-24-0.

Treeton CC – 1st XI: Charlie Roebuck ct Greig Batty b Liam Bacon 0; Stephen Foster ct Neil Longhurst b Liam Bacon 41; Scott Cunningham lbw b Tom Fletcher 20; Gareth Davies ct Neil Longhurst b Jim Tasker 4; Chris Cobb ct Sam Chatterton b Greig Batty 15; Paul Fenn ct Anthony Wilson b Jim Tasker 11; Greg Norton b Greig Batty 1; Irfan Mirza ct Anthony Wilson b Greig Batty 9; Adam Clarke ct Greig Batty b Neil Longhurst 16; Jamie Harrison not out 9; Muhammad Attari ct Liam Bacon b Greig Batty 7; Extras 7 (4lb, 3w). Total: 140 all out (44 overs).

Fall of Wickets: 0-1 Roebuck; 37-2 Cunningham; 65-3 Davies; 68-4 Foster; 86-5 Fenn; 88-6 Norton; 106-7 Mirza; 106-8 Cobb; 133-9 Clarke; 140 all out Attari.

Bowling: Liam Bacon 7-1-23-2; Ben Webster 6-1-32-0; Tom Fletcher 9-3-12-1; Neil Longhurst 6-1-28-1; Jim Tasker 9-2-17-2; Greig Batty 7-0-24-4. Man of Match: Liam Bacon. Umpires: Terry Bateman & Bryan Lowe.


Mark Myers wrote: Well done, solid performance, to Jim Tasker and his team. Good popular choice (Liam Bacon) for man of the match. I’d also like to mention Tom Fletcher’s bowling figures, when it comes to big games Mr Reliable does it again. 1 for 12 off 9. Catching the ball makes a pleasant change! Quality afternoons cricket #upthewizards!



Saturday August 15th

Whitley 1st XI v Aston Hall (away), SYCL Championship

Aston Hall won toss and chose to bat.

Aston Hall 1st XI: 276 for 5 (50 overs). Nicholas Smit 139 (13x4s, 6x6s); Matthew Cartwright 90. L.Bacon 9-2-43-1; N. Longhurst 12-2-66-3; T. Fletcher 14-2-74-0; B. Webster 6-0-19-0; J. Tasker 6-1-43-0; G. Batty 3-0-29-0.

Fall: 14-25-251-272-275. Smit & Cartwright 226 for 3rd wicket.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 169 for 7 (50 overs). A.Wilson 60, J. Tasker 29 not out, C. Siddall 24, N. Longhurst 21, A. Fletcher 14. Uzman Azeem 4-22, Steele 2-42.

Fall: 6-70-104-127-131-145-145.

Aston Hall won by 107 runs.


Wickersley beat Treeton by 68 runs (Younis 130 not out for Wickersley).

Top of Championship now reads:

1. Aston Hall P18 82pts (14 BP);

2. Treeton….. P18 76pts (17 BP);

3. WHCC … P18 75pts (14 BP).



Sunday August 16th 2015  


Whitley won toss and chose to bat.

Result : Whitley Hall CC – 1st XI – Won by 41 runs

Whitley Hall CC – 1st XI 181-9 (45 overs) Treeton CC – 1st XI -140 all out (44 overs)

Whitley Hall CC – 1st XI

Name How Out Bowler Runs 4s 6s Balls
1 Matthew Milburn ct Jamie Harrison b Muhammad Attari (OS) 20 3 0 29
2 Chris Siddall not out 64 6 2 108
3 Anthony Wilson (o/s) ct Jamie Harrison b Muhammad Attari (OS) 0 0 0 10
4 Neil Longhurst ct Jamie Harrison b Adam Clarke 53 10 0 54
5 Jim Tasker* b Adam Clarke 0 0 0 2
6 Greig Batty b Greg Norton 20 0 2 39
7 Alex Fletcher ct Jamie Harrison b Stephen Foster 7 0 0 16
8 Sam Chatterton b Muhammad Attari (OS) 4 1 0 6
9 Liam Bacon b Muhammad Attari (OS) 3 0 0 11
10 Ben Webster b Stephen Foster 0 0 0 1
11 Tom Fletcher not out 0 0 0 1
Extras lb (3), nb (7) 10
Total 181-9

Fall of Wickets:  23-1 Milburn; 26-2 Wilson; 105-3 Longhurst; 105-4 Tasker; 136-5 Batty; 155-6 A. Fletcher; 161-7 Chatterton; 172-8 Bacon; 173-9 Webster.

Bowling: Stephen Foster 9-0-32-2; Attari 9-1-29-4; Roebuck 4-1-17-0;Norton 9-1-44-1; Clarke 9-1-32-2; Cunningham 5-0-24-0.

Treeton CC – 1st XI

Name How Out Bowler Runs 4s 6s Balls
1 Charlie Roebuck ct Greig Batty b Liam Bacon 0 0 0 4
2 Stephen Foster ct Neil Longhurst b Liam Bacon 41 6 0 69
3 Scott Cunningham lbw b Tom Fletcher 20 4 0 46
4 Gareth Davies* ct Neil Longhurst b Jim Tasker 4 1 0 23
5 Chris Cobb ct Sam Chatterton b Greig Batty 15 0 0 51
6 Paul Fenn ct Anthony Wilson (o/s) b Jim Tasker 11 2 0 17
7 Greg Norton b Greig Batty 1 0 0 2
8 Irfan Mirza ct Anthony Wilson (o/s) b Greig Batty 9 1 0 13
9 Adam Clarke ct Greig Batty b Neil Longhurst 16 1 1 13
10 Jamie Harrison not out 9 1 0 19
11 Muhammad Attari (OS) ct Liam Bacon b Greig Batty 7 1 0 7
Extras lb (4), w (3) 7
Total 140

Fall of Wickets: 0-1 Roebuck; 37-2 Cunningham; 65-3 Davies; 68-4 Foster; 86-5 Fenn; 88-6 Norton; 106-7 Mirza; 106-8 Cobb; 133-9 Clarke; 140 all out Attari.



Bowling: Liam Bacon 7-1-23-2; Ben Webster 6-1-32-0; Tom Fletcher 9-3-12-1; Neil Longhurst 6-1-28-1; Jim Tasker 9-2-17-2; Greig Batty 7-0-24-4.

Man of Match: Liam Bacon.


Saturday August 8th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Houghton Main 1st XI (home), SYCL Championship

Houghton Main won the toss and chose to bat.

Houghton Main 1st XI: 150 all out (34.5 overs). Merryweather 46, Rehman 32, Sinton 30. Longhurst 7-2-15-2; Bacon 7-0-52-4; T. Fletcher 8-2-30-1; Batty 3-1-15-0; A. Wilson 7-1-26-1; Tasker 2.5-0-2-2. Note: Alex (‘Call me Alex Stewart’) Fletcher claimed 4 catches as stand-in wktkeepr, Batty 3 catches.

Fall of wkts: 3-19-39-42-45-45-121-141-150-150. (Rehman and Merryweather 76 for 7th wicket.)

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 153 for 3 (24.1 overs). Siddall 61, Longhurst (run out) 49, Tasker 26no. Fall: 42-53-116.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by seven wickets.

Footnote: Whitley were without Ben Webster, Sam Chatterton, and Matt Milburn, all sd to be in Ireland, but they weren’t missed. Doug Muzawazi and Steve Bethel came into the side, with Greig Batty returning after missing last week. Alex played a blinder behind the stumps, Sam might not get back in.

The situation at the top of the SYCL Championship now looking very interesting after today’s results. While Whitley were beating Houghton Main, Aston Hall were settling for five points, but their victory at Elsecar shot them into top spot, with Treeton being beaten by five wickets at Hallam.

So now the top of the table looks like this:

1. Aston Hall P17 77pts;

2. Treeton P17 76pts;

3. WHCC P17 75pts;

4.Wickersley P17 61pts.

And next weekend Whitley visit Aston Hall, while Treeton go to Wickersley!

Then, on Sunday, it’s the Whitworth Cup final at Elsecar, where Whitley face Treeton.


SaturdayAugust 1st

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Darfield 1st XI, away, SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 198 for 7 (42.2 overs). Anthony Wilson 82 not out, Chris Siddall 29, Jim Tasker 29.

Rain: match abandoned. 2 pts.

Two of Whitley’s rivals at the top of the Championship, Treeton and Aston Hall, both won. Treeton beat bottom club Wath by 6 wickets, while Aston beat Wickersley by 38 runs. The topof the Championship now looks like this:

1 Treeton… P16 W11 L3 BP17  76pts;

2 Aston H.. P16 W10 L2 BP14 72pts;

3 WHCC… P16 W10 L3 BP12 68pts.

4 Wickersley         56pts


Saturday July 25th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Conisbrough 1st XI (away), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won the toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 408 for six(50 overs).  Neil Longhurst 213 (24x4s, 10x6s, 132 balls); Jim Tasker 69; Anthony Wilson 61; Chris Siddall 30; Matt Milburn 21.  Longhurst & Tasker 260 for 4th wicket. Oliver Jackson 3-104.

Fall of wickets: 52-52-140-400-408-408.

Conisbrough 1st XI: 200 all out (32 overs). Jack Whittaker 50, Oliver Jackson 37.

Fall of wickets: 12-33-45-69-81-90-91-132-200-200.

Ben Webster 7-1-30-3; Liam Bacon 10-0-54-2; Greig Batty 7-0-54-3; Tom Fletcher 5-0-41-0; Jim Tasker 2-0-13-0; Anthony Wilson 1-0-3-2. Sam Chatterton 5 catches.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 208 runs (7pts).

Today leaders Treeton beat Coal Aston by 7 wkts (5pts), while Aston Hall beat Hallam by 9 wkts (7pts). Top of table now looks like this:

1. Treeton 69pts

2. Aston Hall 67 pts

3. Whitley Hall 66 pts

4. Wickersley 55pts

Awaiting match report

Sunday July 19th

SYCL T20 regional finals (at Wath)

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Coal Aston 1st XI (semi-final)

Whitley Hall: 102 all out (19.3 overs). Jimmy Ahmed 22, Andrew Hirst 21, Neil Longhurst 17, Jim Tasker 17.

Coal Aston: 99 all out (19.4 overs). Hemingway 41. Liam Bacon 3-12, Jimmy Ahmeed 4-14, Jim Tasker 2-18.

Whitley won by 3 runs.

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Wickersley 1st XI (final)

Wickersley 1st XI: 188 for 3 (20 overs).Shaajhan Younis 100 not out, R. Harrison 31, Lowe 29. L. Bacon 1-24, N. Longhurst 1-45, G. Batty 1-32.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 104 all out (17 overs). N. Longhurst 31, A. Fletcher 13, L. Heathcote 12. Ellis 3-24, Younis 3-14.

Wickersley won by 84 runs.


Saturday July 18th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Wickerley 1st XI (home), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won toss and chose to field.

Wickersley 1st XI: 236 for 7 (50 overs). Jordan Lowe 61, Richard Harrison 48. N. Longhurst 11-3-41-0; G. Batty 13-1-63-4; T. Fletcher 15-4-58-2; L. Bacon 7-1-32-1; C. Wragg 4-0-30-0.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 219 all out (49.1 overs). Sam Chatterton 55, Tasker 40, Longhurst 32, A. Wilson 21. Bothma 4-65, Iftikhar Afzai 5-54.

Fall: 31-33-137-138-190-206-206-210-214-219.

Lost last five wickets for 13 runs.

Wickersley won by 17 runs.

Meanwhile, Treeton won by 90 runs at Darfield, where Steve Foster hit 127 and claimed 5-26! And Aston Hall (37-0) beat Coal Aston (36 all out) by ten wickets, Ludlan claiming 8 for 17!

Top of Championship table now reads:

Treeton P14 64pts (15bp)

Aston H P14 60pts (12bp)

WHCC P14 59pts  (10bp)

Tickhill P14 57pts (12bp)


                     A spell of magic is what we need after another setback says Matt Milburn
Our disappointing run of form continued as the senior Wizards slipped to third in the Championship table after a disappointing setback against Wickersley at Baxter Field on July 18. Having so recently held a ten-point lead at the top, we now find ourselves five points behind the King-inspired leaders Treeton, while the ever-consistent Aston Hall now occupy second spot. We arrived at Cinder Hill Lane ahead of this fixture anxious to get our season back on track…well, that was the aim, but, as they say, the best-laid plans sometime go astray. Following World War One Head’s fitness issues (it’s now easier to count the places on his body he hasn’t injured than what he has), he slotted into the role of ‘coach’ following Mr. IPL being absent enjoying a mid-season break in sunnier shores.

Coach Webster had asserted himself well with the team in the build-up to the game, promising a warm-up that consisted of 12 morettis. The only problem was that coach Webster didn’t show…and we were all left rather parched.   However we did get another source of satisfaction in the viewing the consequences of the recent operation on a certain Alex Fletcher, and, well, let’s say it was revealing, amazing, amusing or entertaining, depending on one’s view of the ‘details’. You could use any combination of those words, but the best description may simply be ‘Ouch!”. Whitley won the toss and elected to field, and, two overs in, coach Webster arrived, wearing an ensemble of beige shorts and pink shoes.

Milburn, dazzled by the brightness of those shoes and the reflection of the sun on that Bobby Charlton comb-over, decided that playing without his mate wasn’t actually that much fun, and, by cincidence, at that moment his back decided to break. So off they departed into the changing room following a guest appearance by James ‘Bieber’ Brown to perform some much needed physio. Rumours continue to circulate about what actually happened in that changing room… Unfortunately we’ll fast-forward to the middle of the innings, as I simply can’t report what I didn’t see. Whitley must rue the chances they didn’t take on Saturday. The old saying ‘catches win matches’ seems to be eternally true, and, unfortunately, we couldn’t take the chances we created, thus propelling Wickersley to a score of 236 for seven.

The pick of the home bowlers was “Captain Birdseye” Greig Batty with four wickets and “Keith Lard” Tom Fletcher, who toiled away for 15 overs straight through to pick up two wickets. We set out to chase down what was a gettable score despite our much-daunted batting order having been juggled around to accommodate Cat Stevens, Kevin the teenager, and an injured Jonah Lomu. As always, not losing wickets with the new ball are the key to success, and, unfortunately, Whitley found themselves 33 for two as Siddall and Wilson departed following a hostile spell of bowling from Bothma and the tight lines and length of Iftikhar. Cometh the hour, cometh the man. Step forward Kim Jong Un who batted superbly after being thrust into the No. 3 role. Chatts’ form has been a revelation this season, and credit must be paid to the way he has batted all year. He and Tasker batted superbly for a 104-run partnership to take the score to 137 for three before they both departed in quick succession –Chatts departed for 55 and Jim for 40.

Brief starts followed for “Birdseye” Batty and Kevin Longhurst but they couldn’t get us over the line as Whitley lost their last five wickets for 13 runs, with an Iftikar hat-trick the major factor for this, accounting for Kevin, the Dog Whisperer and, as luck would have it, Jonah.

Commendable efforts to Cat Stevens, who was clearly in visible pain after almost every ball, “Sheephead” Wraggy and “Keith Lard” Fletcher as we tried to salvage two points from the game.Sadly, we fell short. The Wizards for the first half of the season were impeccable. It isn’t panic stations quite yet, but we need to quickly rediscover what worked for us then, and find our form as we move towards the business end of the season with everything still to play for.

Matthew Milburn, July 18th.

Sunday July 12th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Wickersley Old Village 1st XI (away), Whitworth Cup semi-final

Wickersley won the toss and chose to bat.

Wickersley OV 1st XI: 185 for 8 (45 overs). Shaaghan Younis 70, Jahangir 29.  Neil Longhurst 9-2-24-2; Ben Webster 6.3-0-41-1; Liam Bacon 9-1-33-0; Alex Fletcher 0.3-0-0-0; Tom Fletcher 9-1-27-3; Jim Tasker 4-0-18-0; Greig Batty 7-0-38-2.

Fall: 22-66-100-100-116-125-167-176

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 186 for 3 (34.3 overs). Anthony Wilson 65 (11x4s, 2x6s), Neil Longhurst 76 not out (12x4s), Greig Batty 25 not out. Bothma 1-50, Afzai 1-36, Jahangir 1-23.

Tasker and Wilson 72 for 3rd wicket, Longhurst and Batty 80 (unbroken) for 4th wicket.

Fall: 0-34-106.

Whitley Hall won by seven wickets.


Limp-along Ben Webster reports on a Sunday success at Wickersley

We arrived at Wickersley on Sunday in a positive mood after our strong win on Saturday, and with this and the memory of our very successful first half in the previous Sunday’s aborted tie still fresh in our minds, we knew that if we stuck to our plans and executed our skills all would be fine for the Wizards. The day started with Alex (soon to be Half a Man) Fletcher taking the warm-up in his usual energetic manner and deciding to stop the Sunday ritual of kabaddi, much to the disappointment of his team-mates, and deliver a thoroughly professional warm-up –much to our disappointment. Jim (aka Dymock’s dad) Tasker lost the toss, and Wickersley decided to bat on a wicket that didn’t look like it was going to get any better. Ben “Scapegoat/ Sicknote/ World War One head” Webster and Neil “It’s My Time of the Month” Longhurst opened the bowling. Longhurst was unfortunate not to pick up a wicket after bowling a tidy spell, but it was World War One head who picked up the first wicket of Harrison off a ball that must have just clocked 90 clicks and rose off a length. A few overs passed, and, as most Whitley fans know, it wouldn’t be a standard season without the Scapegoat getting injured. So, with the poor lad down and some of the Whitley players noticeably disturbed by the extent of his injury, it took a brave man to finish off his over.

Cometh the hour, cometh Half a Man, who bowled an exceptional three balls, and managed to rid himself of the demons that have haunted him ever since his last bowling spell against Elsecar last year. Tom “Grandad Body” Fletcher replaced World War One head, and he not only bowled to his usual high standards, but showed that in his old age he has suddenly become a strike bowler. “Grandad Body” finished with 3 for 27.

Greig “End of Season ‘do’ is in Otley” Batty, Liam “Keith Lard” Bacon, and “Time of the Month” all bowled the remaining overs, picking up wickets and keeping the scoring rate down. (Batty 2-38, Bacon 0-33, Longhurst 2-24). Wickersley finished their innings on 185 for 8, a score we were confident of chasing down. Our new opening pair, Liam “If I don’t hit a boundary off the first three balls I face, I’ll pass out” Heathcote and Anthony “I must impress my girlfriend Kylie” Wilson, set about chasing our target…unfortunately for Pecker, it hadn’t been his weekend and next week he may find himself below me in the batting order…anyhow, we were 0 for 1.

Next in was supposed to be “Time of the Month”. Unfortunately, he was stuck in a queue for the toilets, so in went Jim (aka Dymock’s dad) Tasker instead. After a partnership of 72 and looking comfortable, Dymock’s dad departed for 14 and a slightly bruised ego (middle stump).

After his toilet break, Longhurst was ready to bat, and he and Prawn Wilson both batted extremely well against some awkward bowling from Jahangir. Wilson brought up his 50 in what was the most destructive over of the innings, taking the not-so-steady Eddie Ellis for 24 off one over! Later our Aussie pal departed for a well-played 65, and showed us how much having a pop star in your life can help your batting (he had hit 66 not out at Wath the previous day)! Greig “End-of-season ‘do’ is in Otley” Batty entered the fray, and he and Longhurst both batted very well –Longhurst finishing on a very well-played 76 not out, and Batty on a very patient 25 not out– to see the Wizards home comfortably with more than ten overs to spare. So, overall it was a good day for the Wizards and we look ahead brimming with confidence  –looking forward to a repeat of last year’s Whitworth Cup final, with hopefully the same result and an early morning breakfast in Naps on the Monday! Up The Wizards!
Ben Webster, July 12th

Saturday July 11th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Wath 1st XI (away), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won toss and chose to field.

Wath 1st XI: 94 all out (27.5 overs)

Dyson 23.  Neil Longhurst 10-2-35-1; Ben Webster 6-1-22-2; Tom Fletcher 7.5-2-10-5; Liam Bacon 4-0-12-2.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 98 for 2 (14.4 overs). Anthony Wilson 66 not out, Sam Chatterton 15, Alex Fletcher 15 not out.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by eight wickets (7pts).


Sunday July 5th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Wickersley 1st XI (away), Whitworth Cup seni-final

Wickersley won the toss and chose to bat.

Wickersley 1st XI: 157-7 (38.4 overs). Jahangir 33, Jordon Lowe 36. Longhurst 6-1-15-2; B. Webster 9-3-28-1; Batty 5.4-2-18-0; T. Fletcher 9-1-26-1; Tasker 4-0-24-1; C. Wragg 5-0-28-2.

Fall: 11-27-46-68-84-113-124.

A thunderstorm ended play at 4.15pm, and, though the heavy rain eventually stopped and weather conditions improved, because of the state of the ground in certain areas the match was abandoned at 7pm. To be replayed next Sunday.

Saturday July 4th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Hallam 1st XI (home), SYCL Championship

Hallam won toss and chose to field.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 200 for 9 (50 overs).

Greig Batty 61 (10x4s, 2x6s), Sam Chatterton 60 (off 66 balls, 13x4s), Neil Longhurst 23, Jim Tasker 18. Batty and Chatterton 101 for 7th wicket. Newman 15-5-33-4; Williams 15-5-39-2.

Fall: 4-27-40-55-59-79-180-192-200.

Hallam 1st XI: 204 for 7 (45.4 overs).

Alex Hughes 94 not out (118 balls, 12x4s, 1×6), Benzies 19. Ben Webster 5-0-24-1; Neil Longhurst 10-0-43-0; Jim Tasker 5-0-25-1; Greig Batty 12-1-50-2; Tom Fletcher 13.4-1-52-3. Note: Hughes survived an appeal for a catch off Tom Fletcher when he was 46.


Hallam won by three wickets.

Match report by Jim Tasker:

So the ‘Posh Boys’ rolled into Ecclesfield for what was a very important
game for both sides, Whitley needing to bounce back from a shocker the
week before, and Hallam fighting a relegation battle.

The toss was going to be very important given Friday night’s thunderstorms, which had spiced up
the wicket.

Hallam’s diminutive skipper called correctly and to the delight of his teammates chose to insert the Wizards.

Enter Millers and Sidds, the first ball of the match set the tone as it reared off a length and slapped Millers in the glove! (It clearly wasn’t going to be easy setting a competitive total).  Millers was first to depart as
he missed a straight one, Longers slapped a couple of boundaries until mistiming one to Dymock, and Sidds thought he was able to “execute his sexy cover drive skills” and was bowled off his legs!

Prawn and Alex, well the less
said about them the better!

So at 79-6 we were in the shit! But Chatts joined the the big lad (Greig), and played his best knock for the Wizards
to date! Timing the ball to all parts the two put on a 100 to get us to what was a very competitive 200 for 9.

Hallam’s reply was always going to rest on their openers, and after Dymock was given out LBW early on you’d of thought we might’ve rolled through them. Hughes at the other end rode his luck, but stayed, thus frustrating the Wizards attack, and his luck was never more in than when he nicked one to Chatts
behind and given not out.

The game then got a bit spicy as the pressure mounted on both teams.

Hughes stayed til the end to win the game for Hallam.

Hallam 5 points, Whitley 0!

But the Wizards were still top of the league, given thatTreeton lost as well.

Onward to Wath next week!

Saturday June 27th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Treeton 1st XI (away), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 126 all out (46.1.overs). Greig Batty 38, Anthony Wilson 22, Sam Chatterton 19, Ben Webster 19. Steve Foster 5-33, Adam Clarke 3-13; Greg Norton 1-28, Attari 1-33.

Fall: 6-6-12-12-19-66-88-88-102-126.   Notes: Wilson and Batty 47 for 6th wicket; Foster’s 13.1 overs included 6 maidens.

Treeton 1st XI: 127 for 0 (15.1 overs). Charlie Roebuck 75 not out, Steve Foster 49 not out. Greig Batty 3-0-27-0; Tom Fletcher 3-0-41-0; Liam Bacon 4-0-40-0; Ben Webster 4-2-9-0; Neil Longhurst 1.1-0-9-0.

Treeton (7pts) won by 10 wickets. Treeton, second in the table, are now three points behind leaders WHCC.


Neil Longhurst reflects on a top-of-the-table setback for the 1st XI

The 1st XI arrived at Washfield Lane in bullish mood, knowing a win against our major rivals would leave us with a very substantial lead at the top of the SYCL Championship; and when we won the toss and chose to bat, the outlook appeared rather promising.

However, an hour later, having been reduced to 19 for five after 14 overs, our prospects didn’t look quite so bright!

Credit must be given to the Treeton new-ball attack, for you could count on the fingers of one hand the number of bad balls they bowled in the first twenty overs.

Our top three batsmen were all victims of Steve Foster: Milburn caught at slip defending, Longhurst and Siddall being cleaned up by ones that nipped back.

Skipper Tasker, who at this point might have begun to question his decision to bat first, went on to record the longest duck in history, playing and missing umpteen times. He even played and missed when being given out caught behind.

When Fletcher was plumb leg-before playing round a straight one, an extremely early finish seemed in prospect. Thankfully, Prawn and Batty dug in and put on 47 before Prawn smoked one straight to mid-on.

Chatts joined Batty for another small partnership before Greig fell for patient 38. Streaky put down his cup of tea and strode out to the middle, kicked his first ball and picked up his tea again before it had even cooled.

Chatts fell to a wonder catch at slip from Davis before we got to see Ben Webster hit Foster for a massive six; but Foster (5-33) exacted revenge by bowling Webster, and the innings was all done for a paltry 126.

A couple of early wickets when Treeton batted, it was felt, and we’d be in with a shout.

Unfortunately, with the exception of Webster, the Whitley attack set the bowling machines to crap as they served up a selection of half-trackers and half-volleys as Charlie Roebuck(75 not out) and Foster (49 not out) knocked off the score inside 16 overs, with some splendid strokeplay.

On the odd occasion when the ball was put in the right place, chances were created but unfortunately none was taken. Comedy efforts at catching from the Fletchers, Chatts and Prawn looking at each other as the ball sailed between them, and Webbo dropping the simplest caught-and- bowled you could wish to see…it summed up the day perfectly from a Whitley perspective.

Disappointing it certainly was, but it needs to be put behind us as soon as possible.

The sound of big Fletch telling us to bowl first is still ringing in our ears…


Neil Longhurst, June 27 2015



Thursday June 25th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Hallam (home) SYCL T20 semi-final

Hallam won toss and chose to field.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 134 for 8 (20 overs). Tasker 33, Sam Chatterton 29, Siddall 19, A.Fletcher 14. Williams 4-19.

Hallam 1st XI: 118 for 9 (20 overs). Hughes 25, Benzies 24not out; Batty 2-26, Longhurst 2-17, B. Webster 3-22; J. Ahmed 1-28.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 16 runs.


Saturday June 20th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Coal Aston (home), SYCL Championship

Coal Aston won toss and chose to field.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 304 for 7 (47 overs). Tasker 107 (17 x 4s, 1 x 6); Greig Batty 81 (off 59 balls, 5x4s, 7x6s); Siddall 33, Milburn 29, Wilson 28. Tasker & Batty 141 for 6th wicket.

Fall: 57-57-80-148-150-291-303.

Liam Johnson 4 for 72.

Coal Aston 1st XI: 162 all out (27 overs). David Rodgers 71 (9x4s, 4x6s).Ben Webster 5-0-35-4; Tom Fletcher 5-1-39-2; Greig Batty 8-0-41-2; Liam Bacon 9-2-40-2.

Fall: 25-95-95-114-115-132-132-152-162-162.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 142 runs.

Lead at top of Chamionship is now 10 points.


Alex Fletcher reflects on the Wizards’ latest run-glut which set up a seven-point success against Coal Aston –and skipper Tasker shows again he’s in the form of his life

Coal Aston were the latest visitorsto feel the force of the Wizards current “300-plus” brand of cricket when they came to Baxter Field last Saturday.

The day started in peculiar manner with the clubhouse temporarily transformed into a Swedish Massage parlour. Ex-skipper Fletcher walked into a Fifty Shades of Grey scene, with current Captain’s other half knees-deep into a naked Australian. Fletcher simply re-adjusted himself and turned away.

Back on the field Coal Aston won the toss and inserted the Wizards on a wet one, which wasn’t an issue to us as we had been given licence in the team-talk to Play with our Hearts..or something like that, issued by World War One Head Webster.

Our usual opening partnership of Siddall and Milburn continued with their prolific offensive stroke play, and we accelerated to 57 before Milburn, having seen the fielder drop back to deep mid-off, thought he would just check that his vision hadn’t deserted him, and chipped the very next ball straight to said fielder. Confirmation that his eyes are currently fine.

Sponge Bat Ginger Head at No.3 tamely returned a catch to Harrison for 0, and then we began to play a game of ‘one-hand, one-bounce’, with Siddall (33) and “Mr Grey” Wilson (28) sent back to the pavilion off, shall we say, debatable catches.

Fletcher came and went: having not batted in a month, he decided to hit his fourth ball to Parson Cross, only missed the ball by 12 inches…and was stumped. He then retired to parenting duty pushing his six-month old son around the boundary. The child’s first words sounded something like “Dad, that was shit”.

At 150 for five, it was time to re-build. Who better to take on this but our very own ‘vintage wine’, Jim Tasker. Sporting his very own Brian Blessed beard, Jim is arguably in the form of his life, caressing the ball to all parts of the ground. ‘Blessed’ has achieved many feats while in Whitley colours, but one goal that had eluded him was a ‘ton’ for the Wizards.

Saturday was the day it finally arrived!

It was never in doubt. He raised his bat to celebrate the three-figure landmark to rapturous applause from the balcony, and a thumbs up from Fletcher, who has been wishing this achievement for many years. It was a quality knock.

Blessed was ably assisted at the other end, compiling a 140-run partnership with ‘Boom Boom’ Batty. ‘Boom Boom’ continued with his reputation as a boundary bully by bludgeoning seven massive sixes and five fours in his 81 off 59 balls. Replacing Jaco Castle was never going to be easy, but in ‘Boom Boom’ we have found somebody with an equally destructive hitting ability –and someone, too, who shares a similar IQ level to our ‘French’ friend.

Chatts and Liam also batted but without incident.

The wizards finished on yet another 300+ total and were in good spirits leading into the Tea Hut.

Coal Aston came out to bat knowing a quick start was imperative if they wished to get anywhere near to achieving something from the game. But they were knocked back immediately with World War One head snicking off the visitors Overseas. At the other end, Rogers decided to have a little fun and set about WWI head and Tom “I-know-I’ll-just-keep-bowling-leg-stump” Fletcher. Along with Browes, Rogers’ onslaught got the run rate up to 10’s, and CA were 95-1 before ‘Boom Boom’, who had replaced Leg Stump Larry at the road end, finally rushed Browes –the latter chipping one to a very confident Milburn, who snaffled a decent skier. (Ever since Milburn has reverted to catching with his hands as opposed to his bonce, the results have significantly improved).

Streaky had replaced WW1 Head from the field end, and, with the help of a smart catch by Mr Grey in the slips, ended Rogers’ stay at the crease for a very impressive 71 off 46 balls.

This dismissal opened the door to CA’s middle and lower order, of which our returning opening bowlers made short work of mopping up. WW1 Head returned figures of 4 for 35 with Leg Side Larry two for 39, Boom Boom two for 41 and Streaky two for 40.

So, another seven points for the Wizards means we go into our next League game (tomorrow, June 27), against our nearest rivals Treeton, top of the table, 10 points clear and in good spirits.

This week’s WOW was given to Sponge Bat, can’t remember the reasons why maybe because his out was pathetic!

Alex Fletcher, Sky Sports News, reporting from the Press Box at Cinder Hill Lane, Whitley!



Saturday June 13th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Tickhill (away) SYCL Championship,  RAINED OFF

Sunday June 7th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Aston Hall 1st XI (home), Whitworth Cup.

Whitley Hall won toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall: 376 for 4 (45 overs). Batty 113no (9x4s, 7x6s), Milburn 82 (12x4s, 3x6s), Tasker 67 (4x4s, 6x6s), Longhurst 41 (7x4s, 1×6), Wilson 37 (off 15 balls, 4x4s, 3x6s). Matt Sheppard 0-103, Ward 2-60, Shaw 1-85, Smit 1-59, Azeem 0-53.

Fall of wickets: 80-162-296-335.

Aston Hall: 250 (45 overs). Barker 32, Riaz 55, Azeem 36, Rob Ward 71. Tom Fletcher 9-0-37-0; Ben Webster 9-2-28-1; Biswick Kapala 9-1-45-2; Charlie Wragg 7-0-48-4; Neil Longhurst 7-0-32-1; Chris Verity 4-0-53-1.

Fall: 35-54-79-79-118-141-141-154-239-250.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 126 runs.


Greig Batty reports on how promoted youngsters played their part in Sunday’s success


This week’s Whitworth Cup quarter-final tie saw the return of Aston Hall just a week after their defeat in the SYCL Championship. The day looked set to be a good one with the sun shining and weather forecast set fine throughout. Having seen the forecast, Coach Bethel went from playing to twelfth man so he could have “one” pint of Guinness.

Although Coach Bethel found it hard, he managed to keep off the juice long enough to take the warm-up –a session that was a difficult task given the stiffness from Saturday’s well-fought victory at Elsecar. It’s fair to say the only part of the anatomy which was loose on all 11 players was Matt “Jesus” Milburn’s rectum.

Following through…sorry, following on from stretching, a few drills began which we all know lead to the square where, after seven weeks, Dr Tom “ Ouch-my-shoulder’s-fine” Fletcher still has difficulties understanding how it actually works. Enter Biswick “Lethal Bizzle” Kapala.

It was like watching See No Evil, Hear No Evil featuring Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor. A Comedy of errors!

Following on from a positive warm-up, Jim “The-OAP-yeah-you-know-me” Tasker got the Wizards off to a good start by winning the toss and electing to sunbathe. In the absence of Chris “Loves-to-hit-the-cover-drive-through-the-eye-of-a-needle” Siddall, negative Neil “get-your-nose-over-the…ball” Longhurst stepped up to open with Millers and got the Wizards off to a great start, hitting the ball to all parts.

Longshanks of Goole was back in town for a short period, hitting a very good 41 off just 33 balls. With 80 on the board and still in the power play Greig “pinch hitter” Batty was sent in to do just that, and failed miserably, immediately getting tied down by the spinners.

At the other end, Millers continued to smote it around off the medium pacers, hitting the ball to parts of the ground no other human finds possible.

Drinks taken, and you know what happens next. A wicket came not too long afterwards with Millers proving his feet DO move when the ball is coming towards them, leaving the stumps exposed for a fine 82 off 70 balls.

The game had been set up with 20 overs remaining and eight wickets in the tent. The playstation controller had been set up with only the circle(6) button being pushed. With Jim ”The-OAP-yeah-you-know-me” Tasker now at the crease with those hockey wrists, Murali was in trouble –the OAP making it look easy throughout, assisted by the promoted lynchpin Batty.

In an attempt to hit a bigger six than the one Felix Baumgartner just got his finger tips to on the previous day off Jim’s own bowling, the OAP was eventually removed being bowled through the gate by the off-spin of Smit. A quick-fire 67 and 134 Partnership with Batty.

Enter Prawn “Milo Man” Wilson. Like many Superheroes before him  –Eric had his bananas, Popeye his spinach, Shane Warne his Performance-enhancing diet shakes– Prawn now has his Milo (Kiddies Nesquik drink).

Prawn strode to the crease like he was Luke Adams (Australian race-walker) with them small quick steps. Milo man didn’t fail to impress. It was raining cricket balls in his 37 off just 15 balls. He even managed to put a smile on Longshanks when he managed to catch Prawn one-handed off the Whitley Hall CC roof!

Batty finished off the innings as he was supposed to: start it moussing it around, finishing with 113 not out off 103, with Whitley ending the innings with 376 for four off their 45 overs.

With 376 on the board, Whitley turned to the Ben “Scapegoat” Webster and Tom None-for” Fletcher in hope of some quick wickets and tight bowling. This was successful only in the latter, the one wicket in the first ten overs coming off the tidy bowling of the Scapegoat snicking off to the OAP.

With ten overs gone and only 40 on the board, it was a near-impossible task for Aston Hall to push for victory. Whitley turned to the junior Wizards, Biswick “Lethal Bizzle” Kapala and Charlie “Jonty Rhodes” Wragg.

The youngsters from the junior ranks came on to bowl in tandem, executing their skills with excellent line and length throughout, showing the fans the future is bright at Whitley Hall CC.

Persistence paid off with Lethal Bizzle removing the poles of both the opener Barks and Riaz at No. 3 to finish with fine figures of two for 45 from his nine overs on what was a very good deck. 

Charlie took to the first team like a duck to water, snicking off the Overseas in his first over to Sam “Symbols” Chatterton, which came as a surprise to us all, Sam having used his concrete gloves for most of the season.

Charlie continued to create chances, dismissing the middle-order to finish with superb figures of four for 48.

Sixteen overs to go, time for Captain Teapot; 260 runs required, so obviously Longshanks had to make sure his boundary men were in the right spots. Having been hit for a four in his first over, it was inevitable that one of the boundary fielders was in the wrong spot, which led to Longshanks sending a carrier pigeon to call in the troops from the Armies of the North. The umpire stood his ground with ‘Thou shall not be allowed to have 500 fielders, Longshanks’. All in all, a good spell of one for 32 by Longers.

With eight overs remaining, the game got interesting. Aston Hall only required 24 an over at this point, which brought a brave move by the OAP by asking Chris “Ron Weasley” Verity to come on from the road end.

Word of this soon spread, with all homeowners coming out to protect their windows. It wasn’t long before the spectators thought they had moved to a golf course with “FORE!” being shouted by all present.

This shortly followed by the confused umpires who followed up with “No, That was definitely six”.

The second over saw much of the same, with Wardy smoting another for six. In this instance the ball was hit so hard, it looked destined to smash a neighbour’s back door in — until it dipped onto Streaky Bacon’s parked car. Odds are, if Streaky had been protecting the car at that point, the car would have still have had the same amount of damage.

Weasley’s third over saw a peach of a ball with Wardy running past it. All Pinocchio had to do was move his concrete boots an inch, catch the ball, and take the stumps. It was like a slow-motion picture from the Matrix, with Sam dodging the bullet and allowing it to go for four byes.

A few balls later, the ball went up a chimney, and Sam did well to catch it. Had Symbols dropped that, we could all see the Expelliarmus coming to remove Chats’ gloves. Vez ended in fine form wrapping it up with the last ball of the game.

An excellent victory for the Wizards moving in to the semi-final, where we meet Wickersley.

Greig Batty, 7th June


Saturday June 6th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Elsecar 1st XI (away), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall 1st XI won the toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 274 for 8 (50 overs). Milburn 46, Tasker 62, Wilson 44, Longhurst 28, Verity 29, Chatterton 25, Heathcote 21 not out, Batty 4. Hussain 4-83, Meadows 1-23/.

Fall: 70-85-124-187-192-229-258-264.

Elsecar 1st XI: 214 all out (45.1 overs). A. Swallow 26, J. Meadows 50, I. Swallow 40, Aitken 52.

T. Fletcher 7-1-34-1; B. Webster 4-0-21-0; Batty 9.1-1-34-6; Tasker 13-3-64-0; Longhurst 8-1-29-2; Bacon 4-1-24-1.

Fall: 45-45-61-130-140-142-212-213-214-214.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 60 runs (7 points).


Liam Heathcote tells a tale of tea and toast –tea for him and a toast to the 1st XI after their victory at Elsecar !

Whitley had a bad start to the day when it emerged that Sids had been grounded for the whole weekend, allegedly for not completing his weekly chores (though he did submit a sick note); so an in-form heavyweight by the name of Heathcote was called into action. In fact, Heathcote had been disappointed at not having been selected after being promised a spot, and the lad had already purchased his big plate for the extravagant teas at Elsecar.

The warm-up got off to a bad start for Heathcote having been told by the veteran of the side that these days we had to do a full lap of the pitch for the warm without having a stretch (rest). The old skipper would have had at least two or three stretches (rests).

The fielding drill just showed Elsecar our speed, catching ability and organisation until, when Milburn’s turn arrived he made us look sh…no, let me be polite and say ‘poor’. Bowlers had a ball, batters had a bat, and Heathcote, Prawn, Vez and Millers pretended to do some catching until Heathcote pulled a full-length dive to the left, tipping the ball onto Verity’s oversized forehead leaving him angry and dazed, but still ginger.

We started off well, winning the toss and choosing to bat on a used wicket. Openers Matt ‘I-limp-after-being-hit-on-the-wrist’ Millers and Neil ‘zzzzzzz’ Longhurst put on 70 for the first wicket, but I didn’t watch much as I was having…sorry, as I was otherwise engaged; but well batted, lads.

Vez went into bat still slightly upset at Pecker after he had apologised and managed to keep a straight face, but Vez took his anger out on Jason Meadows by putting him onto the third green of the local council’s pitch-and-putt. Then Mr Burns caught Verity after the ball accidentally landed in his hand, and Verity must feel unlucky as he dropped around six that day.

In steps Jim ‘Joe’ Tasker.  A man in form who does well for a 41-year-old, ‘Joe’ smacked it around in his usual hockey-slapping style until his old-age took over and he went for a random walk and was run out by the bowler at the batting end.

Prawn looked good, inside-edging everything for a steady 40-odd, Greig was sh…let’s say cr…er, no, rather poor. Sam came in and looked his usual self, timing everything but can’t get 50.

So in stepped Heathcote, batting with Prawn –who told him the bowler was swinging it both ways and nipping off the seam. All Heathcote had on his mind was tea, and he also had a slight face on as he’s sh…er, rather cr…er, rubbish at bowling and, coming in at No.8, he couldn’t be classed as an all- rounder unless the judgement was based on waist size.

In a nutshell, Heathcote wanted to build an innings with Prawn, so he decided to hit the first two balls as hard as he could…and it worked!

Prawn was making batting look easy at the other end, so Heathcote ran him out! In came Bacon, who made the mistake of playing a better shot than his partner, so he got run out as well! Next to arrive at the wicket was club legend Ben ‘my-hair’s-been-like-this-since-I-was-13′ Webster,  with whom it was an honour to bat…such a legend, and he managed a 0 not out off 0 balls as Whitley finished with 274 for eight from their 50 overs.

Now for Heathcote’s highlight of the day – TEA. IT WAS MAGNIFICENT –and made even  better with being able to have two puddings and unlimited ice cream!

Elsecar built a steady partnership with Jason and Lurch putting on 45 before Greig came on. He started with a sh..sorry, started with a poor ball before taking Scott Jones next ball by accidentally bowling a Jaffa.

Sheldon removed young Ethan G, who had started to look comfortable; then Greig came back on an bowled another sh…er, poor ball to get Jason M (50).

Mr Burns, aka Ian S, used his experience to hit 40-odd. Glenn Yates heard the bell for happy hour, so he got out. In stepped Big Lad, who hit Joe to Hoyland a couple of times (after which, in true Joe style, Joe gave himself another over).

After that Elsecar were sh…er, rather disappointing, and the batters’ choice of footwear was even worse. Greig was the pick of the bowlers, with, poor balls finishing with six wickets, couple of wickets by the others. We ended up winning by 60 runs, and, looking at the scoresheet, I see that Ben bowled too, but I can’t remember that.

Anyway, well played the Wizards, and I wish you luck next week.

Liam Heathcote, June 6th

Editor’s note: When Ainsley Swallow lost his wicket, it was off the bowling of Batty, and Jim Tasker took the catch in the bend in an arm, the ball being deflected off wicketkeeper Sam Chatterton’s glove! An unusual catch!


Thursday June 4th

Whitley Hall v Thorncliffe (home) SYCL T20 QF

Whitley won toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 207 for 5 (20 overs). Greig Batty 75 (5x4s, 8x6s –he scored his runs off just 27 balls); Chris Siddall 55 (8x4s, 1×6); Matt Milburn 27. Armstrong 1-23, Connor Brunt 2-47.

Fall of wickets: 31-103-107-160-197

Thorncliffe 1st XI: 139 for 8 (20 overs). James Brown 43. James Ahmed 2-14; Jim Tasker 2-33; Younis 1-40.

Fall of wickets:6-6-6-62-74-74-123-139

Whitley Hall won by 68 runs to reach semi-final.


Saturday May 30th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Aston Hall 1st XI (home) SYCL Championship

Aston Hall won toss and chose to field.

Whitley Hall won by 132 runs (5 pts)

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 349 for 7 (50 overs). Milburn 65 (9x4s, 2x6s); Siddall 57 (9x4s); A. Fletcher 30 (2x4s, 1×6); Anthony Wilson 62 (2x4s, 6x6s); Jim Tasker 71no (4x4s, 6x6s); Greig Batty 28 (3x4s, 2x6s). 17X6s and 31x4s in the innings. Steele 3-96, Coulson 2073; Smit 2-75.

Fall of wickets: 130-140-142-210-249-304-334.

Aston Hall 1st XI: 217 for 7 (50 overs). Mark Barnard 79 (1x4s), Rob Ward 39no. Batty 13-2-49-1; T. Fletcher 12-2-37-3; B. Webster 3-0-20-0; L. Bacon 6-0-32-1; Tasker 6-1-13-0; Longhurst 10-0-56-2.

Fall of wickets: 13-15-22-64-106-145-175.


Tom Fletcher reflects on a 132-run victory over Aston Hall that keeps the 1st XI top of the table

Whitley Hall’s 1st XI maintained their 100 per cent start to the season, cementing their place at the top of the SYCL Championship table with a 132-run victory over Aston Hall that ensured they remained the only undefeated team in the top division.

Aston went into the game in third place, knowing that a win would take them to the top. They were, however, faced with a formidable Whitley batting line-up hungry for runs.

The pitch at the ‘Velodrome’ (aka Baxter Field) looked ‘good’. It was hard (steady on, lads), and there was lots of live grass, suggesting there would be something in it for everyone.

Jim ‘OAP’ Tasker lost the toss and Whitley were put in.

Millers and Sids were both in imperious form. Millers raced along at over a run a ball – peppering his favourite area (can’t say where, the opposition bowlers haven’t worked it out yet!) with regular boundaries; Sids was moving along casually (is there any other way?), waiting patiently for ‘that’ ball he is able to caress through the off-side.

The pair put on 130 inside 20 overs before Millers hacked at a wide one from Steele, picking out Coulson at third man for 65. Enter Long Shanks…as a bowling team there is probably nothing more ominous than the arrival of Long Shanks when the score is already racing along at over 6s. Alas, his stay was brief– he despatched a couple of boundaries before edging Steele behind for eight. 

Sids followed shortly afterwards, being trapped leg-before to overseas star Nicholas Smit for a well-crafted 56.

Here began a slightly awkward period for the Wizards. Steele was beginning to get the ball to swing and Smit had slowed the pace well with some controlled spin. Alex ‘Steve’ Fletcher and Anthony ‘Prawn’ Wilson batted sensibly to emerge from this period unscathed; with Prawn bringing up his first 50 for the Wizards with a HUGE(!) six over the pavilion.

‘Prawn’ would eventually fall to Steele for 62. Steve batted well for 30 before holing out straight as he mistimed a shot off Smit.

Enter the OAP, rejuvenated with the bat as skipper. The OAP despatched the ball to all parts with a truly exhilarating display of hitting – eventually finishing not out on 71 off only 34 balls (Wolf man would have been proud). 

At the other end, Greig ‘Comfortably-The-Reddest-Face-Ever’ Batty (28 from 16) was playing second fiddle with a strike rate of a nib less than 200!

The Wizards closed on 349 for seven. Steele was the pick of Aston’s bowlers with three for 96 off 15.

Having almost not defended 300-plus a few weeks earlier against Darfield, Whitley’s bowlers were in no mood for complacency.

Batty and Tom Fletcher (considered a strike bowler nowadays?!) opened up. The pair began well, Batty removing the lynchpin Cartwright for one, well caught by Long Shank. That would be one catch from one chance!

The prize wicket of Adam Whiteley soon followed, ably caught by the OAP at slip off the bowling of Fletcher for six. Make that two from two. Barker (5) and Smith (21) soon followed, caught by Matt ‘I-Can’t-Quite-Pick-It-Up’ Milburn (three from three) and Greig ‘It-Didn’t-Bounce-I-Promise’ Batty (four from four), both off the bowling of Fletcher.

Aston were now in the mire at 64 for four, but Whitley’s celebrations were soon curtailed as it became clear that Aston were not going to attempt a genuine run chase.

Barnard batted well for 79, holding off pressure from the Whitley players to ‘have a go’. He survived a couple of dropped catches, but on the whole, looked comfortable, eventually falling to a good catch from Steve off Long Shanks.

Riaz added a short cameo (25 off 35), but never looked a threat.

The match would eventually peter out disappointingly– the Aston lads settling to disrupt Whitley’s charge rather than mount an attack of their own. Ward (39 not out) and Coulson (9 not out) stonewalling through the last ten overs.

The Whitley bowlers persevered, but a combination of a placid deck and determined batting, halted their charge. Wickets were shared by Batty (1 for 49 off 13), Fletcher (3 for 37 off 12), Bacon (1 for 32 off 6) and Longhurst (2 for 56 off 10).

Five points to the Wizards who remain top.

Tom Fletcher, May 30

Saturday May 23rd

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Houghton Main (away), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won toss and chose to bowl.

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 3 wickets.

Houghton Main: 226 for 7 (50 overs). Tanzeel Ali 58, Ian Simon 42. Batty 7-0-72-2; B. Webster 8-1-21-0; J. Tasker 15-3-35-2; T. Fletcher 6-1-22-0; A. Wilson 5-0-22-0; Longhurst 6-0-27-1; Bacon 3-0-25-2.

Fall: 58-88-140-174-210-226

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 227-7 (48.4 overs). Milburn 31, Siddall 7, Longhurst 35, Wilson 11, A. Fletcher 23, Tasker 31, Batty 44no, S. Chatterton 24no. Bacon, B. Webster and T. Fletcher did not bat. Rehman 3-70, Simon 2-39.

Fall: 17-82-83-118-120-166.



Greig Batty reports on how Whitley’s grit clinched a three-wicket success for the 1st XI

The Weekend brought a trip down Houghton Main for Whitley Hall’s 1st XI, and on arrival the ground looked in great condition –the grass was green and lush, with only Dr Tom “I-bowled-well- last-weekend-skip” Fletcher’s shoes looking whiter than the wicket itself. Terry Bell shoes.

The warm-up for the day was intense with plenty of running to be done –not great for the “heavy all-rounder(s)”, and which took its toll going into the game. Dr Tom “I-bowled-well-last-weekend-skip” Fletcher once again failed to work out how the square throw-and-catch routine works, coach Steve Bethel clearly not having explained how this is supposed to be done.

It wouldn’t happen on Jack’s watch.

The skipper went in for the toss early doors, called correctly and decided to bowl, numpty. 

Following the skipper’s encouraging team talk, the Wizards took the field in an attempt to get ten Houghton Main wickets. Greig “the heavy all-rounder” Batty, executing his bowling machine stuck on “poo emoji” skills, being immediately hit over cover for four first ball.

It was soon evident that there was more life in a cemetery than the Houghton wicket, which was more suitable for the medium/slow bowlers such as Ben “Scapegoat” Webster, who displayed a fine opening spell and tied down one end.

Whitley not having picked up a wicket in the first ten overs, the skipper brought himself into the attack, and found some turn from ball one. Aided by Houghton Main’s opening batsman Browny, Jim felt like he was back at the 60th birthday party with all fielders snoozing through his overs. The game finally came to life when the umpire raised his finger. Game on, or not.

As time went on in the innings, the bowlers toiled in their efforts to find wickets, with no luck coming Whitley’s way. This being the case, the skipper turned to the Prawn. The ten players who weren’t invited to the 60th birthday party last week were astounded with this decision, the lad having being dispatched for more runs in one over than his current highest score with the bat. Alex “pregnant bellied skidmeister” Fletcher threatened to retire at this point, having being overlooked for a second week running. That having been said, Prawn bowled well, accompanied by ‘Negative Neil’ Longhurst and The Streaky Bacon, who claimed much needed wickets late in the innings to provide a calm before the storm.

Whitley’s fine form in the field continued throughout the innings, with an improvement on last week’s eight dropped catches to just the six this week. In this context the most memorable piece of work came from Matt “Jesus” Milburn. Matt has recently being likened to Jesus for his calmness as acting leader, and for his love of life, but more notably for having holes in his hands.

For the second week running, a high catch mysteriously went through the said holes, hitting him in the same cheek as the previous match against Darfield. Matt “Jesus” Milburn went down like he’d been hit by Anthony Joshua, only for the Powers of the Lord to kick in, and he arose strong with only a small scratch to show for his efforts –this being the downside of having such strong healing powers. He arose Matt “the Almighty” Milburn.

Houghton 226 for seven off their 50 overs.

The second innings saw Chris “loves-to-make-love-whilst-thinking-of-a-cover-drive” Siddall and Matt “Jesus Almighty” Milburn looking to set the game up for Whitley. But the fifth over brought the dismissal of Sids, thanks to a sharp catch at second slip for just seven runs.

‘Negative Neil’ Longhurst(35) joined Matt “Jesus Almightly” Milburn (31), and they shared a strong stand of 65 before both being dismissed by Rehman, of whom it should be said only he knows what he was bowling.

The trend continued throughout the innings with Prawn (11), Alex (23) and Jim (31) all getting starts but failing to go on with their innings.

G1 “the heaviest all-rounder” BATS (44*) was joined by Sam “concrete boots” Chatterton(24*) with 61 runs required from the final eleven overs and four wickets in the tent. At the end of each over the batsmen came together, and G1 talked the young buck through the innings. On each occasion Sam emphatically explained how he was going to ‘smash the Overseas over cover’. Sadly, this prediction failed to materialise, which suggests that Sam must be saving the performance for when Houghton Main visit Baxter Field in August.

However, what happened in the second-to-last over was something much better from Samuel, as he ended the game with a fine edge for four, followed by a huge six back over the Aussies’ head.

Game, Set, Match Whitley Wizards. 227 for seven, 48.4 overs.

A very good game of cricket, played in excellent spirit, with Whitely grit getting the Wizards the win. A big kick up the bum for the upcoming fixtures.

WOW: Matt “Jesus Almighty” Milburn  (Jim was lucky).

Greig Batty, May 23


Saturday May 16th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Darfield (home), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won by 23 runs.

Darfield won toss and chose to field.

WHCC 1st XI: 326 for 4 (50 overs). Chris Siddall 123no (14x4s, 2x6s), Batty 61 no, Milburn 45, Verity 45.

Fall: 65-1, 212-2, 221-3, 226-4.

Siddall & Verity 147 for 2nd wicket; Siddall & Batty 100 unbroken for fifth wicket.

Darfield: 303 for 9 (50 overs). Bhalto 134, Ward 52.  Ben Webster 12-3-71-3; Tom Fletcher 15-0-58-2; James Ahmed 3-0-30-0; Liam Bacon 8-0-64-3; Anthony Wilson 1-0-15-0.


Alex Fletcher reports on the 1st XI’s 23-run victory on the day Darfield visited Baxter Field and the runs kept coming in a game that was a great advert for the SYCL’s top division

Whitley Hall’s 1st XI welcomed Darfield to Baxter Field, and while our captain Jim Tasker was executing his duties at an in-laws sixtieth, the leadership responsibilities were handed over to ‘Miami Vice (captain)’ Matt Milburn; and, after a very composed and collected team talk from the stand-in skipper, he lost the toss and Whitley were asked to bat first on the same wicket that had been difficult just seven days earlier.

It was soon clear that the wicket was back dry, and that runs would come easier than the week before. Especially with Chris “Who wants to make love to this cover drive” Siddall full of form and class and eagerly continuing his run-scoring exploits. Paired with Milburn, who had rediscovered the concept of not asking Sidds to run singles and concentrate on slapping sixes over cover, Whitley’s run rate was off to a flier.

Sixty-five was on the board when Millers took on one too many shots and was caught for a very well-played 45 off 39 balls.

In strode ‘Ron Weasley’ Chris Verity with wand in hand and commenced building a solid partnership with Sidds, who was still at the other end stroking orgasmic shot after orgasmic shot that it really was a pleasure to watch.

Darfield tinkered with a few bowling changes rotating their star performer, Australian Topp who went on to ton up on a day he probably would like to forget. On 45 Weasley decided to put his wand away (however it did make an appearance later in the evening!) and was caught off Waldron.

Whitley were well placed at 212 for two with 15 overs left, with Prawn striding out to meet Chris. However a mini revival from Darfield saw Wilson and Fletcher back in the shed for “f” all, both contemplating life in the second team next week.

With Whitley’s innings stuttering, G1 Batts decided to take his bat to the crease with him this week. It was a good decision as it turned out, as the heavy all-rounder bludgeoned six sixes on his way to what would prove to be an important 61not out off 41 balls. Sidds,who by now had past the sexiest 100 of the season, continued to find the boundary and finished on 123not out, which took his seasons tally to 300 runs at an average of just 150!

Whitley finished on 326-4 and tea was taken.

Darfield knew that the success of their run-chase would depend on a positive start. Webster opened up from the field end, and set the bowling machine on to shite. He didn’t feel he bowled a bad ball, but his opening spell of 2-0-30-0 suggests something wasn’t quite right. Hadfield was the chief destroyer as he found the full length easy to slap into the dry stone wall at the field end (the wall is under repair this week following the onslaught). An early bowling change bringing on Fletcher from the road end, and switching ‘Balloon Head’ Batty to replace Webster was a smart move from Milburn, as Fletcher threw up a juicy wide half-volley which Hadfield thankfully inside-edged back into his stumps for 34 off 15 balls. Darfield’s intent had been laid down and the run chase was on.

Further wickets from Batty, Webster and Fletcher (who had now managed to circumnavigate around the grand canyon which was his foothole) meant that Darfield, having had a great start, found themselves precariously situated on 96 for four.

Darfield’s captain Ward joined opener Bhatti and started to rebuild their innings. Bhatti had shown his quality with some lovely drives, but was aided by some poor out fielding from the Wizards. He was dropped on 25 by Bacon, whose mind was clearly on his Dog’s bowel movements, and when Fletcher palmed down a simple return catch it was becoming evident that it could possibly be Bhatti’s day.

With 18 overs left, Ward and Bhatti decided “let’s give this a go”. Unfortunately, Jimmy of the Caribbean was still sipping rum as he went the distance in an expensive three-over spell costing 30 runs.

With a constant run-flow of at least 10 runs every over, Millers was starting to scratch his head and look around for that twelfth fielder and searching for that bowler to break this devastating partnership. Wilson was clearly not the answer as his six deliveries was buffet bowling at its best going for 15.

With 80 needed from eight overs and two well-set batsman, the pendulum had swung in Darfield’s favour. Cometh the hour cometh the man (men). Bacon sporting a playing shirt from yesteryear, dislodged Ward’s bails for 52, which brought a team-together meeting from Milburn, who continued to ask for calm and a togetherness to get through this. This calmness was not mirrored on the boundary edge as sections of the natives were becoming restless at Whitley’s inability to stop a single in the ring.

Webster then got the important breakthrough, finding Bhatti’s off-stump for a very well-played run a ball 134. At 246 for six Darfield’s attempt at an outright run chase was in question. Australian Topp attempted briefly to get there, but his stumps were re-arranged by Webster, who had now come back and restored some respectability to his figures, bowling a very important spell to end with three for 71.

He does, however, still have a haircut like a World War I soldier.

Bacon then snaffled a couple of late wickets, and the Wizards could smell seven points! With an over remaining, Millburn threw Batty the ball to knock over a 12 year old. Batty had other ideas as he decided to bowl six balls a foot outside off-stump.

Darfield’s innings closed on 303 for nine.

What a game, and what an advert for South Yorkshire Premiership Cricket!

Milburn continued his calmness in his post-match review, when the rest of us just wanted a beer and to examine the day’s skids in the pants, to which the new captain got a face full as a reward for his efforts.

WOW went to our Australian Prawn for tripping up over the covers before the game, continuously slipping in the warm up, and that over!, chucking one over the boundary, and for just being Australian.

Still unbeaten and top of the league (just!). Up the Wizards!

Alex Fletcher, May 16.


Thursday May 14th

Penistone v WHCC (20/20)

WhitleyHall 239-3  (Liam Heathcote 106, Alex Fletcher 78)

Penistone 119-4.


Sunday May 10th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Chesterfield (away), National KO

Chesterfield won by 5 wickets.

Chesterfield won toss and chose to field.


Whitley Hall 1st XI: 158 for 9 (45 overs). Alex Fletcher 39 (5x4s, 2x6s); Longhurst 21; Tasker 21; Batty 20.

Fall: 12-1, 20-2, 32-3, 76-4, 101-5, 122-6, 139-7, 143-8, 151-9.

Chesterfield: 159 for 5 (36.3 overs). Thompson 46*, Roberts 35. Batty 9-0-45-3; T. Fletcher 5-1-19-1; Tasker 7-0-26-0; Longhurst 8-0-33-1; B. Webster 6-1-20-0; Bacon 1.3-0-15-0.

Fall: 24-26-37-90-103.

Runs on the board…but Chesterfield got em!

Chris Verity reports on 1st XI’sNKO exit

Whitley Hall’s first team rocked up at the picturesque setting of Queen’s Park on Sunday to face Chesterfield CC in the National KO after Saturday’s nail-biting Championship defeat of a boisterous Conisborough side, and every player took time to appreciate what will probably be the best pavilion and facilities we shall come across this season (other than HQ!).

With the bleep test-like warm-up done and dusted, Skipper Jim Tasker tossed up and was surprisingly asked to bat on what appeared to be nice, flat deck under the sun. Neil Longhurst stepped back into the fold after spending time with young boys at Worksop to replace Sidds at the top of the innings and strode to the crease with Milburn. 

Chesterfield’s accurate opening bowlers made life difficult for both batsman and we made steady progress in the first few overs until Milburn attempted to go aerial, but only succeeded in toe-ending a simple catch to ex-Norton Oakes player Alex Hibbert at second slip.

Whilst the on-pitch drama was occurring, likely lads Webster, Wilson, Bacon, Chatterton and Heathcoate made a beeline for the ice cream cafe, which offered a vast array of flavours. Newly-trained Club Welfare Officer Chris Verity was also in attendance to ensure Australian Ant ‘Prawn’ Wilson stayed at least 50 yards away from the nearby play area after his previous misdemeanours in home town Laidley. Young Webster, however, was free to roam and was quick to make conversation with the locals, trying to take his mind off other personal issues.

Back on the pitch, ‘Pecker’ Heathcote had sprinted round the boundary, strapped on his pads and made his way to the crease before Jim could get out of his chair. Self-promoted Heathcote was soon back in the shed, however, after also edging to Hibbert at second slip.

This brought Saturday’s hero Jim Tasker to the crease, and he looked to shore things up with the classy looking Longhurst, who, after stroking a six over long off, then chipped to safe hands Hibbert at short cover after getting distracted by talking the Chesterfield wicketkeeper through a run-by-run analysis of his 252 against Goole Town.

The Whitley balcony was still in confident mood despite a poor start that left us at 32 for 3, with Alex Fletcher striding to the crease full of intent and a pair of whites making their way up a hungry bottom. The experienced pair steadied the Whitley ship and made good progress through the middle overs, Fletcher in particular striking a couple of lusty blows out of the ground.

With the score on 76, Jim made the fatal mistake of backing himself to run a quick single, uphill and into the wind. Jim was run out. It was great work by veteran Gladwin –though most folk in the ground, not least Jim himself, believed the skipper was past the stumps and had made his ground.

All-rounder Batty replaced Jim and continued the progress with Fletcher as the Wizards stumbled to 100. One more run on the board, however, and Fletcher was out after hitting a full toss down the throat of long-on. This incident was the lighting of the fuse for the day as, with Fletcher standing his ground for a knee-height full toss, Chesterfield’s ‘coach’ shouted for Alex to politely remove himself from the field of play. Other words were used in the outburst, one which rhymes with ‘duck’ and other with ‘shunt’. This sparked angry scenes on the balcony as Tom Fletcher had to be forcibly restrained from opening a can of whoopass, and Verity pointed out the waist-height rule was flawed being based on where Kev Brown wears his trousers.

The rest of the innings somewhat petered out, with Chatterton and Webster holing out to big shots, and Verity being undone by a ball that swung in and nipped away to take the top of off-stump. Bacon and the angry Orang-utan Tom Fletcher batted out of the remaining overs to see us to 158 for 9 from the 45 allocated overs.

Tea was taken which meant two slices of dominoes pizza each, sandwiches and strawberry dessert with ice-cream. Ben Webster responsibly collected a fiver each from every player (possibly to buy a bunch of flowers) despite no fee being required. Well done Ben. The money was not returned, and it will be put to good use next Saturday for a certain young Australians 18th birthday…

With 158 probably 40 runs short of our pre-innings target, we all knew we had to ‘execute our skills’ in the second half and go at Chesterfield hard to take ten wickets.

This didn’t quite go to plan as Chesterfield made 20 without loss. But then Batty struck the first blow soon after as opening batsman Bird was late on the pull and Bacon took a brilliant diving catch at mid-wicket. Hibbert soon followed: after perfecting the play and miss against Tom Fletcher, he finally managed to nick one to Jim Tasker at first slip. The fiery dog tanian Fletcher gave Hibbert a send off normally associated with a Pakistan vs India game.

The Wizards struck again with the score on 37, Batty bowling a jaffer that clipped the top of middle and off to leave Chesterfield reeling in a similar position to Whitley in the first innings.

This left Sheffield Collegiate product James Colton (fresh from battling against the South Sheffield floods on Saturday) and young Matt Roberts at the crease attempting to rescue the chase. Both batsman looked assured at the crease and began to move the score forward.

Despite Greig’s best efforts to knock Roberts’ head off with a sharp bouncer, the youngster somehow got bat on it with his eyes shut. This stand frustrated red-faced off-spinner Tasker, and he threw the ball at approximately 90 clicks into Robert’s midriff. The young batsman obviously had a lethal combination of little man syndrome and general attitude problem, staring down Tasker, then complaining to the umpire. Alex ‘friend of the people’ Fletcher was on hand to apologise for both incidents.

This bad feeling continued though as Roberts made plea after plea to the umpires due to mean looks and unfriendly banter towards the No. 5 batsman. Any ball thrown within five yards of Roberts also prompted him to appeal to the umpires for more protection. This was mainly ignored by the experienced umpires, so Roberts resorted to shoulder barging the walking wardrobe, Greig ‘the basher’ Batty. ‘Pecker’ responded with a shoulder barge of his own when ‘getting to the stumps’ and is now out for three weeks due to dislocation.

Longers made the breakthrough just before drinks by removing Colton, then Greig let his bowling do the talking against Roberts as opposed to a body slam which many of the crowd were calling for. Roberts was trapped in front of all three by Batty for a well-played 35, sparking Greig to complete his fastest ever time over 20 yards.

This left the score at 103 for 5 with two new batsman and a sniff of a chance for the Wizards that, as it turned out, was not to be. Credit must go to captain Drage Thompson as he led his side home with a knock of 46 from 40 balls.

WOW: Greig Batty for being bullied by a lad 8 stone wet through.

Chris Verity 10th May


Saturday May 9th

Whitley Hall 1st XI v Conisbrough (home) SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall CC 1st XI won by three wickets (7pts)

Whitley won toss and elected to field.

Conisbrough: 124 all out (36.3 overs). Scott Lowe 45,M.Barnes 25, J. Doran 22. Greig Batty 8.3-0-23-2; Ben Webster 11-1-39-2; Tom Fletcher 11-3-44-2; Liam Bacon 4-0-8-2; Jim Tasker 2-1-7-2.

FoW: 44-49-64-66-92-94-120.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 125 for 7 (34.4 overs).  Jim Tasker 50 not out (7 x 4s, 1 x 6), Anthony Wilson 29, Sam Chatterton 18.  Arosh Janoda 15-3-50-4, Scott Harris 6-1-19-2.

FoW: 0-7-8-16-61-61-102.

Umpires: M. Mann and S. Malone.

WHCC team: C.Siddall, M. Milburn, J. Tasker (capt), A. Wilson, A. Fletcher, G. Batty, S. Chatterton, C.Verity, L. Bacon, B. Webster, T. Fletcher.


Chris Siddall reports on a not-so-easy three-wicket success against Conisbrough

Saturday was here… Game time!

After days of wondering whether we would actually get a game in, the weather played its part to allow the Whitley boys a chance to go top of the league.

The day began with 300 Watsapp messages arranging volunteers to sort the covers with Roy “Magnum PI” Sanderson and Don Fletcher. The lads turned up bright and early to find the job had already been done, so they were on the ground in plenty of time to start a brisk and energetic warm-up. Steve Bethel had spent most of the week at work with his feet up reading “101 Great Cricket Warm-Ups”, so the lads were put through their paces with mind-bogglingly complex drills (especially for Millers, who started the day as he meant go on). The wicket was wet following the rain of the previous days, and, therefore, it was expected that whoever won the toss would elect to bowl first. Happily for the Wizards, Jim “execute your skills” Tasker was the successful captain –indeed, when the coin fell to the ground he let out a loud cheer, which left nobody in any doubt about who had won the toss! The game began with Greig “embroider anything” Batty from the Field End, and Ben “Scapegoat” Webster striding in from the road. It soon became apparent the Conisbrough batsmen were going to be in for a hard-fought afternoon, and it was obvious Lowe had watched too much boxing the week before as he elected to “punch” numerous deliveries through his innings.

The opening pair toiled to no avail, not helped by the Wizards apparent pact to drop 50% of all catches available throughout the afternoon… including one that looped gently over Millers and “plopped” about three feet behind him (The warm- up guru had words at half time!).

The Darton Orangutang was thrown the ball and soon settled in to a steady spell of swing bowling- claiming the first wicket of Barnes leg-before. Batty continued at the road end, and was extremely grateful to Sids, who threw his body on the line to prevent a certain four from a long hop outside off stump. Some would say it should have been caught, but the bruise on Sids’ right nipple suggested otherwise!

With confidence growing Tom Fletcher took the second wicket of Philips through a sharp catch at short-leg by Prawn, who looked as surprised as anyone, followed by two quick wickets from The Scapegoat.

The Wizards were on top, but to the credit of Lowes he continued to bat with patience on an increasingly difficult deck. The Orangutang was unlucky not to claim a third victim as a sharp catch was put down, duly kicking the floor in frustration as Longers was not available. With the Wizards firmly on top, and the visitors’ batsmen starting to look nervously at one another, Liam “in my own time” Bacon was brought into the attack with immediate success bowling a mystery ball which totally foxed the dogged Lowe, trapping him in front leg-before with apparently “the lot going over”.

Doran offered some useful middle-order runs, but Alex “not the skipper anymore” Fletcher took an extremely smart one-handed catch at slip to halt the charge.

With only a couple of wickets needed Jim “execute your skills” Tasker sensed the chance of a couple of cheap wickets, and brought himself into the attack at the road end. With Janoda on strike he pushed Prawn and Sids out to “cow corner” and “not quite cow corner” with the plan working perfectly as the ball was slog-swept at a fair rate of knots straight to Prawn.

Greig ” embroider anything” Batty then picked up a couple of wickets through extremely well directed “Gough style” Yorkers to end Conisbrough’s resistance on 124. Tea was taken in buoyant mood with the usual tomatoes and egg exchanges, and The Scapegoat probably doing something silly. The second innings began with Millers and Sids striding out to middle hoping to replicate their early season form by scoring quickly to knock off the modest total.

However, Millers had other ideas. Following a bet with a friend of “run first ball, whatever the shot”, Millers dabbed his first ball into the covers and called Sids through for a quite frankly ridiculous single.

Had he forgotten who he was batting with? After a full tea and three buns, Sids was having none of it…and Millers was forced to turn tail and was out by a bus length.

After a decent start Verity was left frustrated having pulled a “buffet” delivery straight to square-leg, and Sids followed soon after, playing on to Harris (who now had two wickets).

The pacy Janoda continued to cause the Wizards problems, but with Prawn and Tasker building a score the Wizards were still confident.

With half the score achieved, Prawn was out, soon followed by Batty, who, deciding against using his bat, fell leg-before.

Tasker meanwhile was steadily skippering his ship home with extreme calmness, not to mention a few bruises. Liam “in my own time” Bacon also batted excellently as the Wizards crept home with three wickets and thirty overs to spare. Overall a well-fought result for the Wizards with a particular mention to Jim Tasker who executed his batting skills magnificently. The WOW award was presented with little opposition to Matt Milburn for being a shambles all afternoon.

Chris Siddall May 9th

Saturday May 2nd

1st XI v Wickersley OV 1st XI (away), SYCL Championship

Match rained off, 36 overs. 2pts

Whitley Hall won toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 189 for 4 (36 overs). Milburn 6, Siddall 70 not out, Longhurst 14, A. Wilson 31, A. Fletcher 35, Tasker 16 not out.

Fall of wickets: 12-51-102-154.


Sunday April 26

1st XI v Goole Town (h), National KO (National Club Championship Group 2)

Whitley Hall won by 233 runs

Whitley won toss and chose to bat.

Whitley Hall: 427 for 5 (45 overs). Neil Longhurst 252 off 140 ball, 33 x fours and 11 sixes;

Matt Milburn11 ; Chris Verity 24 not out; Jim Tasker (capt) 26; Alex Fletcher 34; Greig Batty 41; Sam Chatterton 12 not out. Did not bat: Biswick Kapala; Tom Fletcher; Ben Webster; Liam Bacon.

Fall of wickets: 34-1 (Milburn); 142-2 (Tasker); 284-3 (A. Fletcher); 373-4 (Longhurst); 396-5 Batty.

Note Neil Longhurst, dropped on 15, established a new individual record for WHCC (previous best Donovan Koch 161 v Bradfield in 1995), and the total was the highest recorded at the Whitley ground (previous best thought to be 366 for 4 v Elsecar in May 2010). Longhurst ct O’Donnell b Ollie Ounsley.

Goole Town: 194 for 4 (45 overs) Harvey Thomas 94 not out, Lee Hayward 55. Tom Fletcher 1-33; Ben Webster 1-28; Neil Longhurst 1-23.




Quiz King and cricket writer Ben Webster provides all the answers about Sunday’s National KO triumph


We arrived at Baxter Field in good spirits after Saturday’s 10-wicket victory—me, Millers and Vezza more jubilant than others because we had just been crowned Whitley Hall Quiz Champions for the 15th year running…an unbelievable feat, and one that I doubt will ever be matched!

Tasker, who, so it was said, had camped out in the Cinder Hill Lane car-park to ensure he was on the premises extra early following his time-keeping predicament the day before, won the toss and told the lads that he wanted us to go out express our skills and enjoy batting on what we knew (because we had batted on it on Saturday) was a decent wicket.

In the absence of usual opener Sids, many thought that by virtue of Jim’s pre-match speech about expressing our batting skills, the skipper would give me a chance to open with Millers, so, as I’m sure you can all imagine, there was a stunned silence in the dressing room when he decided Longers would be Matt’s opening partner.

Now I could go on and talk about our innings all day, but to be fair nothing exciting really happened.

We posted a measly total of 427 for 5…

Oh, and some batsman named Longhurst got the luckiest 252 I think we shall ever see at Whitley!

As a batsman myself, I know how hard an effort it is to get a double hundred. I once got one on the back garden, so let me tell you how mentally tough you have to be…

It was a pretty faultless team batting display apart from Millers nearly running Longers out, and Chatts attempting the ramp not once but twice and failing miserably after some intense training from Milburn.

We finished tea, and after another strongly-worded team talk from the ever redding Tasker we went out to bowl knowing that our total was never going to be in danger of being reached, but we also knew we must not take our foot off the gas, and should try and gain some more rhythm and bowl in partnerships!

Tom Fletcher bowled his usual cup spell of unbelievable tightness, and our new addition Batty bowled with pace and accuracy without any luck. Tasker chopped and changed his bowlers, but we struggled to make that many breakthroughs, and Goole’s number three said he never felt in trouble against our attack even though you could have fitted Chatts’ head in between his bat and ball when Tasker was bowling!

The Goole innings did have its moments, Milburn once again failing on the travelator and Alex Fletcher turning more and more into his father every game we play!

The most disappointing thing was Milburn getting told to warm up, and then being taken off before he had even bowled. The stage, the crowd, everything was set for Milburn to roll back the years and bowl blistering pace like he used to. But Tasker obviously he didn’t want to bowl his trump card this early in the season, much to our disappointment!

All in all, it was a good team display and a pretty phenomenal effort by Longhurst to make what will be the highest score on Whitley’s Baxter Field for a very very long time.

WOTW award went to Longhurst for stating he was bored when he was on 200 not out…

Ben Webster 26th April 2015




Saturday April 25th

1st XI v Wath (h), SYCL Championship

Whitley Hall won by ten wickets (7 points).

Whitley Hall won the toss and chose to field.

Wath 108 all out (26 overs). Wootton 30, Dyson 22; Greig Batty 7-1-46-4; Ben Webster 7-1-36-2; Tom Fletcher 7-3-9-3; James Ahmed 5-1-12-0.

Whitley Hall 1st XI 109-0 (15 overs). Matt Milburn (57 not out, 8 x 4s, 2 x 6s); Chris Siddall (44 not out, 9 x 4s). Did not bat: Jim Tasker (capt);  Anthony Wilson; Alex Fletcher; Greig Batty; Sam Chatterton; OliverWarren; James Ahmed; Tom Fletcher; Ben Webster.


Anthony Wilson reports on Whitley Hall 1st XI’s  7-point home success


Whitley Hall‘s 1st XI welcomed Wath to Baxter Field in their first home Championship fixture of the season on Saturday, and the senior Wizards wasted no time pleasing their supporters as they cruised to a 10-wicket victory after the bowling unit did what was required to ensure a maximum seven points was theirs for the taking.

Skipper Jim Tasker forgot it was Saturday and arrived at the ground just in time to toss the coin. ‘Football traffic’ was Jim’s excuse, and we will leave it at that.  With afternoon showers forecast and the toss won, Jim had no hesitation in asking Wath to bat.

It was a mixed bag for Whitley’s bowlers in the first ten overs as Wath made their intentions clear early with some extravagant strokeplay.  Wath raced to 13 off the first over before crowd favourite Ben ‘Scapegoat’ Webster struck with his very first ball as opener Matt Lambert missed a half-volley and consequently lost his off stump.

The next five overs belonged to Wath as Harvey Wootton rode his luck and took the attack to Webster and Greig (“Fletch, stop calling me fat”) Batty, Whitley’s key close-season signing.  Steam could be seen rising off Batty as Wootton continued to play his shots much to the despair of the big quick.  Batty had the last laugh, however, as he found the edge of Wootton’s bat, the edge carried all the way down to third man where Webster was fielding. 

The players and crowd held their breath as one as the ball travelled down to Webster who stumbled forward, put his hands out in self-defence and miraculously rose with the ball! Wootton was out for 30 off just 19 balls. 

Webster was again in the action next over as he struck Sam Drury (0) on the pads in front of all three stumps. Batty made it three wickets in three overs for the Wizards as he again found the edge, and Whitley’s overseas signing Anthony “At this stage I’m just here to take catches” Wilson turned a half-chance into a straightforward catch at third slip.  Wath Skipper Rob Barlow (9) couldn’t believe his eyes, but, unfortunately, he had to go. Wath were now 57 for four after being 56 for one, and were well and truly on the back foot.

Skipper Tasker introduced Tom “I’ve dislocated my shoulder but can still bowl” Fletcher into the attack which meant immediate success for the Wizards.  Shawn Dyson chipped a straightforward catch straight back to Fletcher off his very first ball.  As the ball was in the air, the Whitley players began celebrating, but Fletcher had spilt the catch and the ball landed on the stumps at the non-strikers end, leaving Scott Hibbett (9) short of his ground.

Now high on confidence following his direct-hit run out, Fletcher ripped the heart out of Wath’s middle order removing Sam Thomas (Bowled – 2), Jordan Shutt (Caught behind – 6) and Shawn Dyson (22) in his devastating spell of three wickets for nine runs from 7 overs.

Wath, now reeling at 102 for eight, were in deep trouble.  Tasker went for the kill and brought Batty back into the attack from the field end. With rain clouds rolling in, Batty wasted no time removing the last two batsmen, and Wath were all out for 108 from 26 overs.  Batty finished with 4 wickets, Fletcher 3 and Webster 2.

After the tea break, Whitley’s devastating opening pair of Matthew “Ben did it” Milburn and Chris “Check out this cover drive” Siddall wasted no time chasing down Wath’s 108.  Milburn and Siddall looked a class above as the score raced past 50. 

Milburn soon got bored of batting, and, deciding he wanted to get out, he chipped an easy catch to the square-leg fielder.  However, the fielder could see what Milburn was trying to do, and with the result of the game basically decided, he put the catch down, so forcing Milburn to stay on the field.  A furious Milburn decided the quickest way he will be getting a Moretti in his hand will be by finishing the job himself. 

Boundaries flowed as the match rushed to an end.  Milburn robbed Siddall of a certain 50 by deliberately keeping the strike as he doesn’t have Siddall in his Fantasy XI. 

Whitley finished 109 for none off just 15 overs with Millburn not out on 57 and Siddall unbeaten on 44.

This Week’s WOW was given to Skipper Jim Tasker for arriving at 12:15pm for a 12:30pm start.  Well done Jim.

Anthony Wilson, April 25th 2015end



Saturday April 18th

1st XI v Hallam (a). SYCL Championship. 

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 92 runs (5pts)

Hallam won toss and chose to field.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 337 for 8 (50 overs).

Greig Batty 79 (10 x 4s, 4 x 6s); Alex Fletcher 75 (12 x 4s); Chris Siddall 52 (12 x 4s); Matt Milburn 25, Jim Tasker 22.

FoW: 77-89-102-102-150-242-332-334.

Hallam: 245 for 7 (50 overs).

(Dymock 81, Hughes 53, Cooper 40*; Tasker 14-3-52-4; Batty 10-4-37-2; B. Webster 5-1-33-0; Longhurst 9-0-35-1.)



Sam Chatterton reports on a five-point start for the 1st XI at Hallam

The long awaited first day of the season finally arrived, and Whitley Hall’s 1st XI faced a tricky opening match at Hallam, where the ground looked excellent for the first weekend of the campaign.

Former skipper Alex Fletcher, now in charge of the pre-match warm-up, decided to take a different approach from the departed Jaco’s ‘military style cone layout –choosinginstead a friendly tribute to Ben’s World War 1 haircut in the style of a shooting range kamikaze runs. There was a variety of SAS manoeuvres mixed with some horrific Saving Private Ryan impersonations.

At last the serious business started,with Whitley being asked to bat by Hallam skipper Dymock, and openers Millers and Sids got us off to a flier –Sids followingCaptain Jim’s instruction to play aggressive cricket this season (he saw it on TV) and smashing 77 off the first eight overs.

Millers was the first to fall, caught for a brisk 25 including two trademark sixes over cover much to the amazement of our new Overseas Prawn‘Wilson.

This IPL start left the Hallam boys shaking, whatwith us on 77 for one, but the scorecard soon swung more in their favour as Whitley slipped to 102 for four after Longers missed a straight one and fell leg-before, Prawn was bamboozled by a traditional English full toss which he scooped into the air, and Sids fell after a lightening quick 52 off 43 balls, including 12 fours.

Whitley needed another platform, and who better to turn to than the veterans of the side. When Alex was joined by Jim, they carefully negotiated us through the next few overs, and the usual Hallam over-enthusiasm began to fade. Jim was the next to fall at 150 for a well-played 22 off 28 balls, and when this brought Greig Batty to the crease to join Alex, our new summer signing didn’t take long to settle. He got off the mark with two lovely cover drives for four.

Greg and Alex started knocking the ball to all parts of the ground, particularly enjoying the bowling of the Hallam Overseas. With the score on 242, Alex finally fell for a pedestrian 75 off 92 balls. Sam joined Greig for the final 11 overs, which was start of the chaos to follow.

Greig upped the aggression and started hitting boundaries at will. A delightful scoop of the bowling off Williams for six was swiftly followed by Cooper getting smashed for 26 in one over and then having a Longers-style strop at the wicket. Greig finished on an impressive 79 off 65 balls, and Sam departed for 27 including one huge six which was by far the biggest of the day to a ball clocking nearly 100mph. Whitley finished on a mammoth 337 for eight off their 50 overs after being asked to bat first. Good decision Dymock…

If Hallam were to stand any chance of coming close to the target a lot would rest on the shoulders of skipper Dymock. He opened with new signing Alex Hughes and survived a few nervy opening overs from Greig and Ben. After three consecutive maidens the batters finally cut loose in emphatic style, slashing any loose bowling to reach 143 before the first wicket fell.

Whitley had a few half chances to take the opening wicket prior to this, but a mixture of bad luck and the sun being a distraction to someone meant that we had to work extra hard. However, Longers finally made the breakthrough, though it came at a cost as he lost his place at the Sunday dinner table dismissing brother-in-law Hughes for a well-played 53.

With the score at 143 for one, Jim finally decided to bowl, which proved a good decision as Hallam slipped to 183 for four with three wickets for the Jim, one of which was his buddy Dymock for an excellent 81 off 65 balls.

With Whitley needing six more wickets for the full seven points, Batty came back in to the attack for the final 12 overs. A mixture of hostile fast accurate bowling and Sharapova-styled grunting led to him picking up his first two wickets for the club. Jim picked up his fourth wicket of the game bowling the Overseas. But this was the last wicket as Cooper defended resolutely and hit a few lusty blows at the end to finish 40 not out.

Whitley picked up a good five points at a ground where is notoriously difficult for visitors to win.

This week’s WOW award was won by Ben Webster for a variety of nominations, including being the teams scapegoat.

1st XI v Hallam (a).  SYCL Championship. 

Whitley Hall 1st XI won by 92 runs (5pts)

Hallam won toss and chose to field.

Whitley Hall 1st XI: 337 for 8 (50 overs).

Greig Batty 79 (10 x 4s, 4 x 6s); Alex Fletcher 75 (12 x 4s); Chris Siddall 52 (12 x 4s); Matt Milburn 25, Jim Tasker 22.

FoW: 77-89-102-102-150-242-332-334.

Hallam: 245 for 7 (50 overs).

(Dymock 81, Hughes 53, Cooper 40*; Tasker 14-3-52-4; Batty 10-4-37-2; B. Webster 5-1-33-0; Longhurst 9-0-35-1.)

Sam Chatterton, April 18th 2015