AFTER a tense finale, Cononley have won the Cowling Cup – the first leg of what they hope will be a Mewies Solicitors Craven League double.

The final, at Ingrow on Sunday, went to the last over and the south Craven side defeated Hepworth & Idle II by three wickets.

The Westfield Laners, who play in the division above Cononley, had made 118-8, but the latter won it with a straight four by Edward Washington off the fourth ball of the deciding over by Swaraj Thakur.

In the semi-finals, played earlier in the day, Cononley defeated Cowling II, while Hepworth & Idle beat Bingley Congs III.

Now Cononley will concentrate on gaining promotion from Division Three, where they trail leaders Bowling Baptist by 14 points with four matches left, including facing Bowling at home on the last day of the season – Saturday, September 16.

Gargrave II are third, 43 points behind Cononley, but the latter want the championship and not mere promotion by finishing runners-up.

Cononley skipper Harry Parker, whose 40 helped his team win the final, said: “I was surprisingly calm when I was batting because I am normally quite nervous but then I was stood on the sideline . . .

“Winning the semi-final set us in good stead and we had also had a good win in the league the day before so were quite confident, and our batting, bowling and fielding was strong.

“Hepworth & Idle won the toss and wanted to bat, but if we had won the toss we would have bowled as it was a tricky wicket. It was sticky and a few balls stayed really low, but there have been some cracking batting performances.

“At half-time in the final we thought that it was doable as we had scored 150 in the semi-final and seen what Hepworth & Idle had done in their semi-final (114-8).

“Everybody did their bit – Nathan Parker, who did brilliantly with the bat, both the Starkey brothers, Matty Calvert and Colin Stead being a hero, top-edging one into his face, which was nasty, but carrying on.”

As for the league, Parker said: “I think that we can do it. We have had a couple of shock losses, where availability was a factor, but Bowling Baptist did as well on Saturday, and we are playing them on the last day of the season.

“If we carry on the way we are going we will get promoted but we want the championship.”

The other leading scorers in the final for Cononley were vice-captain Parker with 23 and Washington with 17 not out.

Leg-spinner Calvert was man of the match for his 3-23 and a catch.

Massive credit goes to Ingrow’s Ben Weatherall, who was at the ground in the small hours making sure it was fit to play, and his dad Adrian, who is the club’s official groundsman, while Nic Hoyle, Liam Gillard and John Leighton, who helped David Allen present the trophies, were also instrumental in the day being a success.