3 months ago
By andy quirke
PSL 1st XI delivered their 3rd championship in 4 years, congratulations goes to skipper Chris Marsden in his first year as captain
Pudsey St Lawrence were crowned champions for the third time in four seasons after a rain-hit final day to the Premier Division season.
Their match at Methley was one of five in the top flight to be abandoned without a ball being bowled.
The one exception was second-placed New Farnley’s match with Bradford & Bingley at Wagon Lane.
They needed to take 17 points to pip St Lawrence for top spot, but could only managed 13 in a game reduced to 26 overs per side.
New Farnley made 156-8 in their innings with Yorkshire Academy player Billy Whitford top scoring with 35. Young spinner Bradley Reeve was the pick of the Bingley bowlers with 3-22.
With the St Lawrence players looking nervously at their mobile phones for updates from the game, New Farnley knew they had to take all 10 wickets if they were to take the title outright, while Bradford & Bingley had a Duckworth Lewis adjusted target of 143 to win
Bradford & Bingley never looked like winning and neither did they look like capitulating with opener Jack Edgar leading the way with an unbeaten 55 as his side finished on 99-2.
When news of the result filtered through to the Pudsey St Lawrence players that they had won the title by three points, the celebrations started.
Unquestionably the proudest man was their skipper Chris Marsden who has guided them to the championship in his first season at the helm.
“I am so proud of all the players,” he said. “All the hard work we have put in has paid off and it is great to play alongside such a great bunch of lads.
“Three titles in four years is reward for all the effort that the club has put in over the last 10-15 years to build up our junior set up and bring players through.”
This season St Lawrence have had to get used to their relaid pitch. “I think we have adapted well,” said Marsden.
One of the undoubted stars of the title triumph has been opening batsman Mark Robertshaw. He finished the season with 1,079 runs and was just 26 runs short of Arnold Hamer’s club record tally of league runs.
“Mark Robertshaw has been awesome for us this season. The weekend when he scored 162no in our win at Hanging Heaton and scored 126 against Bradford & Bingley the following day showed his class.
“But he wasn’t the only player to impress. Our three seamers Charlie Parker, Jordan Thompson and Richie Lamb took vital wickets throughout the season, and Charlie even won two games for us with the bat.
“Our spinners also came up with key performances, but it was the way we stood up as a team that was so important.
“We came through in close games and we also scored two crucial wins over Hanging Heaton and New Farnley on the final runs in.”
Marsden and his team now have their sights on the Yorkshire Premier League play-offs. They play the North Yorkshire South Durham League side Great Ayton at Scarborough next Saturday.
“It’s a great place to play and we are looking forward to it. We won a close game with Great Ayton in the 2016 semi-finals and we want to repeat that success and go on to play in the final at Headingley.”