Alvaston and Boulton were the visitors to Cock Orchard at the weekend as Hallam looked to keep the momentum going in the race for the title.
A&B skipper Pooley won the toss and asked Hallam to bat first on a wet wicket.
Wickets fell early and Hallam were in trouble, however a combination of hard graft and wayward bowling allowed Hallam to recover and post a challenging 204 all out from their 46 overs.
Matt Tatler top scored with 77 and the rest of the Hallam batsmen all contributed with Hort and Hill adding 40 runs for the last wicket.
After tea the A&B batsmen crumbled under the pressure and began to explore ways of preventing a result, with plenty of time being wasted and questioning the suitability of the light.
With the batsmen’s minds elsewhere the opening attack of Hort and James Lockhart took full advantage as they bowled the opposition out for just 48, Hort taking 6-18 and Lockhart 4-29, with those four wickets taking him past the 50 mark for the season.
Holidays, football and a selection of other excuses meant that the second and third XIs where looking high and low in their efforts to field 11 players for each team.
Jeff Lockhart managed to rustle up 11 players for the seconds thanks to help from right-hand man Kristian Tingle.
Hallam arrived at Marehay and found themselves batting first. They posted a respectable 136 for 8 with Martin Bostock leading the way with a well made 60.
Hallam’s bowlers toiled hard but Marehay reached their target with four overs to spare and just three wickets down. Rob Lathbury had two and the other wicket was taken by Anthony Henshaw.
The third XI were away to Stanton and after winning the toss Ling had asked Stanton to bat first and they responded by posting 191 for 6 declared.
Hallam’s response was steady but some accurate bowling from McGinley and Tom Henshaw ensured that the game never got away from Stanton and they claimed 27 points by bowling out Hallam for 141 with James North top scoring with 41 and Thompson (32) and Sam Johnson (33) making significant contributions.
by Jim Sumner
A 27-point victory over Clay Cross maintained Shipley Hall’s high position in the league and put them on the verge of possible promotion.
Clay Cross won the toss and asked Shipley to bat first.
Rns were hard to come by in the first 12 overs, just 15, but after that Mark Starr really got going with a flurry of fours and a six and with the support from Buckley (10) they put on 44 before a wicket fell.
Martinus Gouws hit a brisk 29 but was then run out when a direct throw from a fielder shattered the stumps.
James Cokayne and Ryan North were both very circumspect at first and in 15 overs only 20 runs were scored.
Later, however, they both made a savage onslaught on the Clay Cross bowlers, North hitting a whirlwind 40 and Cokayne an equally aggressive 49 which included four sixes and four fours.
A total of 58 runs were scored in these last 15 minutes to take Shipley’s total to a respectable 196-7.
Clay Cross bowlers Carley (2-58), Wilmott (1-31), Crowther (1-27) and Garner bowled well in periods of the game and restricted the run rate to a degree, but then succumbed to Shipley’s big hitters.
The Clay Cross batsmen then showed their mettle and though losing a wicket or two in the process the middle order batsmen, Woodhouse (18), Pyne (26) and opener Wilmot all made runs.
However, it was Crowther who had a superb innings of 44 and threatened to deprive Shipley of victory but a brilliant one-handed catch by Paul Aldred off Matt Murfin’s bowling saw him make his way back to the pavilion.
After that Clay Cross were all out for 180, just 17 runs short of victory - a very good effort.
The Shipley bowlers had done their job. Murfin took 4-68, Tom Starr 2-24 and Aldred 4-39 giving Shipley 27 points.
Aldred and Murfin had spearheaded the Shipley attack and shared eight of the wickets in a very good performance.