16th September 2023 – 1st XI  v Adel (H)

Let’s set the scene for this encounter: Steeton are 2nd in division 2 coming into the final game, but Ilkley are breathing down their necks just 4 points adrift. On paper Ilkley have an easier last match, as Steeton are playing the ‘already crowned’ division champions, Adel. This is like Steeton’s 2nd cup final of the season…win or bust. Skipper Steve Pearson lost the toss and were asked to bat first. None of Steeton’s top 4 batsmen managed double figures and all were out caught as Steeton slumped to 17 runs with 4 wickets down…and any hopes of promotion seemed dashed. The tumble of wickets was slowed by a 33-run 5th wicket partnership between Louis Horsfield & skipper Steve Pearson, before Louis was out caught for 19 runs scored from 51 balls with 1 six & 2 fours. Steve went on to share an even better 7th wicket partnership of 64 runs with Paul Quinlan, before Paul too was out caught for a battling 31 runs scored from 31 deliveries with 2 sixes & 3 fours. Steve Pearson completed his half-century but was caught behind for 54 runs scored from 110 deliveries with 1 six & 6 fours. Steeton were on 139 runs with 9 wickets down in the 45th over when Adam Hardwick came to the crease to join Adam Smith, who was on 4 runs. The hope was that the final pair could push the total to 150 and claim a second batting point…Adam Smith had other ideas! Adam Smith played a quite remarkable innings as he farmed the strike for the final 4½ overs and dispatched the ball to all parts of the ground. Adam Hardwick finished with 0* runs, but shared in a surprisingly wonderful unbroken 71-run partnership. Adam smashed the final delivery for a massive maximum and left the field having scored a whirlwind unbeaten 64* runs from just 33 deliveries with 6 sixes & 4 fours. Steeton had posted 200 runs for the loss 9 wickets in their 50 overs.

In reply Adel too struggled with the uneven bounce and opener Ben Hemsley dislodged both opening batsmen and finished with 3 wickets for 58 runs from 10.4 overs, with a regulation catch by Bradley Akrigg and a super low slip catch grabbed by Matt Nutter. Spinner Adam Hardwick (1-29) had a good catch taken by Ben Hemsley. At the 25-over drinks break Adel were 66 runs with 4 wickets down and Steeton were informed that Ilkley had already won af rolex sky dweller rolex calibre 9015 mingzhu engine mens m326238 0009 black tone around 15mm their final match. Skipper Steve Pearson bowled 13 tight overs as he took 2 wickets for 41 runs with a comfortable catch taken by James Robinson. Pick of the bowlers however was Paul Quinlan, who took 4 wickets for just 41 runs from his 15 overs, with a well judged catch on the mid-wicket boundary by Bradley Akrigg as well as too excellent (and important) catches taken in he gathering gloom on the long-on boundary by Craig Walton. Both Craig Walton & Ben Hemsley were awarded fielding points. When Ben Hemsley clean bowled the final batsman Steeton celebrated a fantastic season, which they had just capped with promotion to the top-flight. Adel had been dismissed for 171 runs all out in 46.4 overs. Steeton (19 points) beat Adel (6 points) by 28 runs.

Adam Smith is my Man-of-the-Match

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16th September 2023 – 2nd XI v Adel (A)

Neither side in this encounter were going to win the league and both were mathematically safe from any regulation worries. When skipper Gary Boulton lost the toss Adel asked Steeton batted first. Steeton’s batting line-up was jumbled, with skipper Gary Boulton opening alongside John Akrigg, at the request of the rest of the team. The following batsmen were pretty much in a reverse-order from what you might have normally expected. Gary certainly made the most of his promotion to opener and top-scored with a wonderful 76 runs from 81 deliveries with 2 sixes & 10 fours. Gary shared an opening partnership of 32 runs with John Akrigg (11). Steeton’s batters were urged to throw caution to the wind and when George Bell joined Gary he did as asked. Together they added 73 runs for the 4th wicket, with George scoring a scintillating 58 runs from just 32 balls with 4 sixes & 7 fours. Gary went on to add a further 65 runs for the 5th wicket with Will Smith. Will Smith went on to add 56 runs for the 6th wicket with Max Hibbert, who contributed 37 runs from just 30 deliveries with 1 six & 5 fours. Will Smith completed his half-century and skipper Gary Boulton declared with 4 overs unused. Will Smith came off with an unbeaten 55* runs from 68 deliveries with 9 boundaries along with Luke Watson (9*). Steeton had scored an impressive 267 runs for 6 wickets declared in 41 overs.

In reply Steeton opened the bowling with Simon Cox, who hadn’t had a bat. After trying 4 bowlers it was the introduction of Max Harrison and in particular George Bell, which halted the Adel charge. Max Harrison broke the opening stand and clean bowled 2 batters for 27 runs from 7 overs. Pick of the bowlers was undoubtedly George Bell bowling off-breaks, who finished the season with a 5-wicket haul to add to his half-century. George took 5 wickets for 35 runs from his 13 overs and had a stumping by keeper Max Hibbert as well as a good catch by Luke Watson. Luke was awarded a fielding point. James Macdonald (1-23) nipped out a single wicket before the last 2 wickets were bowled by Will Smith (2-9). Adel had been bowled all out for 179 runs in 41.5 overs. Steeton (20 points) beat Adel (7 points) by 88 runs, and finish the season in a creditable 5th place in their division.

Gary Boulton & George Bell are my joint Steeton Men-of-the-Match.

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17th September 2023 – 3rd v Horsforth Hall Park (A)

Going into the last game of the season neither of these sides were mathematically safe from demotion…so a lot at stake for both teams. Steeton skipper James Nowell won the toss and chose to field first. Hall Park raced to 34 runs before trying to sneak a single to skipper James Yeadon at mid-on. James swooped in and picked-up cleanly and threw the wickets down to break the opening partnership. Hall Park’s incoming batsmen was soon walking back as keeper Max Hibbert took a thin-edge off the bowling of Jake Hill (1-36). A solid 3rd wicket stand was broken by the introduction of Nathan Joseph, who removed both set batters and finished with 3 wickets for 25 runs from his 5 overs, with a well-judged catch on the mid-wicket boundary by Archie Cox. Roles reversed and Nathan Joseph took a good catch on the mid-wicket boundary off the bowling of Archie Cox (1-28). The off-spin of George Bell earned him 3 wickets at the cost of just 28 runs from 8 overs, with a 2nd boundary catch by Nathan Joseph. Nathan was awarded 2 fielding points. As a last wicket stand looked to be starting skipper James Nowell (1-0) brought himself on and it took him just 3 balls to have the last wicket caught by keeper Max Hibbert. Horsforth Hall Park were all out for 157 runs in 35.3 overs.

In reply Steeton began with the most eventful first over ever: in all 10 balls were bowled 33 runs were scored and 1 wicket lost. In all 13 runs came from wides (2 going to the boundary) and George Bell smashed 2 sixes & 2 fours off the deliveries which were celine 83100 trendy scarf within reach. George Bell continued to hit boundaries, but was caught out after 13 deliveries during which time he had scored 38 runs with 5 sixes & 2 fours. Steeton were off to a rapid start with Max Hibbert scoring 11 runs off 11 balls, as they raced to 73 runs with 4 wickets down in just 7½ overs. A less frenetic partnership followed between youngsters Archie Cox & Nathan Joseph. Archie Cox was adjudged LBW having scored 29 runs from 65 deliveries with 6 boundaries; and Nathan Joseph was bowled having scored 19 runs from 48 deliveries with 3 boundaries. Steeton were 7 wickets down on 149 runs and still requiring a further 9 runs for victory. Time for the skipper! James Nowell calmly scored 18 runs from 16 balls with 4 boundaries as well as stroking the ball to the extra-cover boundary to win the match. Steeton had scored 161 runs for the loss of 7 wickets in 31.5 overs. Steeton (20 points) beat Horsforth Hall Park (7 points) by 3 wickets. Steeton finished a creditable 7th in the division (and Hall Park also avoided demotion).

George Bell & Nathan Joseph are my joint Steeton Men-of-the-Match

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