WHILE Lascelles Hall’s Ranga Godage turned in the best bowling display of the season so far, Craig Glover kept Skelmanthorpe hot on the heels of the Premiership’s top two.
Sri Lankan all-rounder Godage took nine for 19 in 11.5 overs (seven of them maidens) to destroy Kirkheaton for 57, a target the Hall reached for the loss of just three wickets to lift themselves away from the foot of the Frank Platt Conference.
Dan Taylor got the other Kirkheaton scalp, that of opener Zafar Khan, to deny medium pacer Godage all 10.
In the top flight, Glover inflicted more pain on champions Honley with a tremendous six for 39 haul from 19.1 overs, restricting the visitors to 87 all out.
Glover got great backing from Scott Dyson, who had three for 15 from eight, and then Sarfraz Ahmed remained unbeaten on 59 to see Skelmanthorpe home for the loss of just skipper Adam Dollive.
It was Honley’s fourth defeat in five matches and they are third from bottom of the standings.
At the top end, Delph & Dobcross and Scholes lead the way after taking six points apiece – the latter in a second successive thriller at Chapelgate against Broad Oak.
After defeating Honley the previous week, Scholes were again indebted to Australian Shane Mott (40) and Ibrar Latif (31) in grafting to 161-9 against some splendid bowling from Ben De Araugo, who was warned for running on the pitch and eventually taken off with figures of four for 39 from 21 overs.
Graeme Hurlbatt took three for 51 from 15 and then, as the Oak were reduced to 106-8 in reply thanks to Andy Alsop’s fine six for 75, he played his part in a storming effort to reach the target with two huge sixes in his 42 not out. Unfortunately for the Oak, they fell 10 runs short.
Barkisland kept themselves in touch with the leaders thanks to another solid all-round performance from Alex Scholefield.
He bagged three for 45 in 11 overs in partnership with Jitender Billa (4-48) as bottom of the table Slaithwaite were dismissed for 152. Scholefield then hit 76 at the top of the order and, with Dave Weston remaining 48 not out, the home side got home by eight wickets to leave Slaithwaite without a point all season.
Shepley remain fifth after their four-wicket home win against Holmfirth, who were held to 183-7 (John Sadler 53) before Tim Rees led the way with 61 as Shepley got over the line with an over to spare.
Top scorer of the day was Clayton West’s Stuart Rank, who rattled 100 and shared in a 137 partnership with Nick Sharp (65) as they totalled 284-7 at home to Meltham.
Jake Thorne (64) and Zubair Raje (82) had their own fine stand, but Meltham were all out for 202 as Chris Thomson and Sharp bagged three wickets apiece.
Golcar continue to struggle for a win and lost by four wickets at Elland, where only Craig Horner (49) and Mick Illingworth (41) made much headway for the Colne Valley side in their total of 151.
Dan Rhodes (3-17 from 10) and James Thornton (4-43) did the bulk of the damage before opener Greg Finn anchored the home reply in measured fashion with 62 not out in their 153-6.
Back in the Conferences, there was another victory for Frank Platt leaders Kexborough, this time at home to Linthwaite.
Michael Jepps (56) and Adam Wiles (33) got Kexborough off to a solid start and some late hitting from Scott Shillito (30 not out) and Glyn Rhodes (25 not out) carried them to 225-7.
With Ben Potter claiming four for 51, it was always too big a target for Linthwaite, who were all out for 152 despite a battling 59 from Umar Bhatti.
Hoylandswaine march on at the top of the Cedar Court thanks to an emphatic win at Lepton, who were dismissed for 90 in reply to the Swaine’s 212-7.
Opener Clark Pickles was the best of the Swaine order with 68 against some dogged bowling from Mumtaz Ali (3-69) and Dale Winterbottom (4-46).
Ian Simon destroyed the Lepton order with six for 30, Mandura Lakmal three for 30.
Nigel Senior (88) led Hall Bower to victory against Emley, Nathan Fitzgerald weighing in with five for 67.
Javed Iqbal (6-51 and two not out) featured in a thrilling one-wicket win for Thongsbridge at Marsden.