GOLCAR will stage the final of the Romida Twenty/20 Trophy on Sunday after pulling off a superb semi-final victory over Delph.
Beaten 12 months ago by Elland in the showpiece, Golcar will be aiming to go one better this time when they host Kirkburton.
Will Hinchliffe shattered Delph’s hopes of reaching (and staging) the final as the Golcar quickie ripped out their top order in the re-arranged clash.
The original tie was abandoned because of heavy rain with Delph pretty much in command, but they struggled in the replay, especially after Hinchliffe knocked over high-scoring Faisal Butt, Irfan Zahoor and Luke Hargreaves in a stunning four-over spell which brought him tremendous figures of four for 20.
And when Golcar skipper Steve Whitwam bowled the home club’s overseas star Bilal Khiljee, Delph were in dire straights at 23-4.
However, Delph skipper Grant Jones was determined his side would not go down without a fight, and cracked a battling unbeaten 75, which featured seven fours and four sixes and came from 56 deliveries.
Jones found an unlikely partner in pace bowler Adnan Ghaus (who seemed to have recovered from the injury which prevented him playing for Huddersfield’s White Rose side the previous day) and his 29 helped his skipper put on 58 for the sixth wicket, as Jones gave his side something to bowl at when lifting them to 153-8.
James Howson was an early victim for Ghaus, but the rest of Golcar’s batsmen all made runs, Craig Horner hitting 21 before Craig Ruscoe (34) and Whitwam put on a vital 60 for the fourth-wicket.
Lee Baxter (23) helped his skipper take the visitors to the verge of victory with another telling 42-run stand, leaving Whitwam to take his side over the line with an unbeaten 45 (five fours, one six, 39 balls), setting Golcar up to host Sunday’s final.