Elsecar’s title bid is back on track after leaders lose points

Cricket action - Whitley Hall v Elsecar. Shahzad Rana
Cricket action - Whitley Hall v Elsecar. Shahzad Rana

Elsecar’s hopes of winning the South Yorkshire League’s Premier Division have received a boost after leaders Wickersley were handed a 21-point deduction by the league.

After incidents were reported from the game between Wickersley and Whiston PC, the deduction was imposed upon Wickersley, who will also start next season on -10 points.

A 20-point penalty has been suspended until the end of the 2014 season, and batsman Kurram Javed has been banned for five weeks.

Whiston will also start next season on -10, and have the 20-point penalty hanging over them until the end of next season.

The deduction means that Wickersley stay top of the table, but are level on points with second-placed Whitley Hall and are just three points ahead of Elsecar in third.

The deduction adds extra spice to Saturday’s clash between Elsecar and Wickersley, at Armroyd Lane.

Wickersley overcame the blow of the deduction with a battling win over Treeton, and Elsecar kept up their faint hopes of title glory with a narrow victory over bottom side Houghton Main, who beat them earlier in the season.

Three wickets each for Shahzad Rana and Luke Townsend helped bowl out Houghton for 169, despite Tanzeel Ali’s 54.

Elsecar were in some trouble at 120-7, before captain Ian Swallow and Ifti Afzal added a 52-run partnership to take them home.

Wath, after being routed for 92, lost by six wickets to Norton Oakes.