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Delight in the league and despair in the cup for Steeton
There were mixed fortunes for Steeton last weekend as they closed the gap on Division One leaders Colling-ham but lost their Waddilove Cup semi-final the following day to Ben Rhydding.
While table-toppers Coll- ingham dropped a point against Otley, the Summer- hill Lane side moved to within two points of them thanks to victory at home to Kirkstall.
An opening partnership of 53 between Craig Walton (48) and skipper Neil Spragg (25) laid a solid platform for Steeton’s 202 all-out total in 44 overs.
Aussie David Wildsmith (47) and John Akrigg (34) also made valuable contributions as Andy Siddall took 4-57 for the visitors.
When Kirkstall replied, a great opening spell from Richard Craddock helped reduce them to 65-5 before Paul Malone (77) and J Wright (25) put on 101 for the sixth wicket.
However, once Malone was dismissed by Stephen Pearson (1-37 off 14 overs), the visitors soon slumped to 182 all out as Craddock returned to claim 6-40.
Steeton’s hopes of a double were dashed last Sunday when underdogs Ben Rhydding beat them in the Waddilove Cup semi-final by 56 runs.
The Ilkley side, who pipped Steeton to the Division Two title last season, posted an impressive 257 as opener Lewis Bolton made 99. Spragg was chief wicket-taker with 5-44 and he also weighed in with 55 when the hosts replied.
He shared a second-wicket stand of 80 with Akrigg (61) but they were always just behind the clock and, with Charlie Swallow following up a previous day’s match-winning seven-wicket haul with 4-15, the home side were dismissed for 201.
Collingham beat holders Burley in the other semi-final.
Upper Wharfedale ’s struggles continue as they were bowled out for just 92 as they suffered a six-wicket defeat against Harden.
In Division Three, Silsden continued their good form with a 70-run win at home to Illingworth.
Craig Thornton made 56 and Lee Bilbrough 26 as the hosts reached 173-8. In reply, Ben Robertshaw notched 45 but Phil Binner turned the screw for the Cobbydalers with 5-12.
Matt Shuttleworth (2-32) and Majid Inayat (2-33) provided support as Illingworth crashed to 103 all out.
Thirteen proved to be the luck number for Skipton as they recorded their first win in their 13th game. They bowled out fellow strugglers Alwoodley for 105 runs and cruised to victory by seven wickets.
Steeton II made up for their first team’s knockout blow by reaching the final of the Birtwhistle Cup.
They stormed to a seven-wicket triumph at home to Pool, who made 215-9. James Yeadon was chief destroyer with 3-49 but Paul Hardwick (2-38), Ross Suri (2-35), Gary Boulton (1-43) and Adam Hardwick (0-29) all produced useful nine-over stints.
A 142-run stand for the second wicket between Michael Wilson (98) and Dave Robin- son (62) laid the platform for victory as Steeton cruised to a final spot against Guiseley on August 12 at Calverley.
The cup success capped a great weekend for Steeton II, who beat Rawdon II by nine