STEETON had their moments in their first round Solly Sports Heavy Woollen Cup tie at Wakefield Thornes.

For example, Ben Hemsley (28) and Tom Smallwood (27) added 48 for the fourth wicket after the Yorkshire Southern Premier League hosts had put the Waddiilove Cup holders in and reduced them to 10-3.

Then, defending 122, Hemsley dismissed opener Kieran Donnachie in the fourth ball of the first over.

But despite that early breakthrough, and Steeton captain Steve Pearson bowling an impressive first and second spell, the Aire-Wharfe League Premier Division new boys fell to a seven-wicket defeat.

The game was switched at less than 48 hours’ notice from Summerhill Lane to Field Lane, which looked a picture despite all the recent rain.

Pearson admitted after the game: “Our outfield is still boggy, mainly in one area near the road end, and that area has now been cordoned off and sand has been put down to hopefully dry it up.

“We spoke to Wakefield on Friday and they said that their pitch (the wicket had been under the covers for four weeks) was in decent nick, so it was a good run-out for the lads today.

“It is always good to have a hit, even though the result was not what we wanted. We are getting a bat and a bowl and dusting the cobwebs off.

“It was a good stand between Tom and Ben when we batted, but unfortunately we couldn’t find another partnership.

“Wakefield batted well but we did all right as a bowling unit. We made it hard for them at times and didn’t give them anything, and it was good for me that I got a couple of wickets near the end.”

Keighley News: Steeton captain Steve Pearson led from the front with the ball, but Wakefield Thornes proved too strong for his side.Steeton captain Steve Pearson led from the front with the ball, but Wakefield Thornes proved too strong for his side. (Image: John Heald.)

As for the upcoming league season, Pearson said: “Finishing in the top half of the table would be brilliant, and we were missing Matthew Nutter and Ewan Johnston here, so they will be back in the team when we play again.

“In the Waddilove Cup, we have (league champions) Collingham at home in our opener, so that will be tough.

“We also know that we aren’t playing at Burley in the league next Saturday (April 27) as their ground is not fit, so we will try and get a friendly either home or away, although the forecast for next weekend is bad.”

Steeton lost Adam Smith, James Robinson and Luke Chapman in quick order when they batted, but Smallwood and Hemsley coped well after that.

The latter playing some pleasing shots through the off side that would have been four, rather than two, were it not for the extremely wet spring that we have been having, with the ball pulling up just inside the ropes.

Smallwood was bowled trying to turn a full-length ball to mid-wicket, while Hemsley chopped on.

After that, only overseas player, Bajan Tremaine Dowrich (19), made any sort of impression as the innings ended in the 45th over of the 50, with former Yorkshire second XI pace bowler Matthew Taylor taking 3-18.

Despite struggling to find the right length at times, Thornes left-arm spinner Freddie Egleston chipped in with a valuable 3-24.

Steeton were buoyed by Hemsley’s prize scalp in the first over of Wakefield’s reply, and he also had several large shouts for lbw turned down later on.

But Thornes keeper Joe Billings, a former Sussex second XI player, and opener James Rhodes then took the game away from the visitors.

Billings hit seven fours and a six in his 62, while Rhodes was dismissed for 49.

Despite the heavy defeat, Pearson finished with superb figures of 2-6 from eight overs, while Hemsley took 1-15 in six overs, and both should be key figures for Steeton this season.

As for Wakefield, they move into a second-round tie at home to East Bierley.

The only other confirmed second-round game sees holders New Farnley host Castleford.

The latter made it through the only other first-round tie to survive the wet weather so far, beating Shepley by eight wickets on Sunday afternoon.

All of the other first-round games will need to played either this weekend or next, while second-round matches must be completed by May 31.

The second round draw is as follows:

New Farnley v Castleford

Shelly or Barkisland v Kirkburton or Golcar

Hoylandswaine or Sandal v Honley or Birstall

Hemsworth MW or Beckwithshaw v Carlton or Woodlands

Wakefield Thornes v East Bierley

Methley or Hanging Heaton v Bradford & Bingley or Townville

Scholes (HL) or Ossett v Birstall or Rastrick

Woodhouse Grange or Barnsley v Pudsey Congs or Cawthorne.