The Diocese of Leeds Cricket Team, runners up in the final of last year’s Church Times Cup, plan to go one better this year and have started the season as they mean to go on.
In their first two matches of 2017, Leeds have beaten the Dioceses of Chester/Liverpool combined side by 65 runs and, this week, the Diocese of Manchester by 123 runs
Leeds v Chester/Liverpool
Chester/Liverpool who started well as they took early wickets but John Bavington (Vicar of Great Horton (Bradford EA), put in an impressive turn at the crease, clocking up 75 for Leeds and contributing to a total of 172 from 33 overs.
Chester replied energetically but it was not enough and they were bowled out by a strong Leeds attack for 107. Tyler took three wickets while Leeds Captain, Phil Arnold (Vicar of Calverley, Leeds EA) took two wickets with Bavington also taking two wickets.
After the match, Phil Arnold, said, “This year will be a little more challenging with a larger pool to get through, but things are looking good after the first match. Let’s hope we can fly the Leeds diocese flag all the way the final in September.
John Bavington added, “It was a really good team effort. We have a particularly strong bowling line-up this year and I think other teams will find it hard to score a lot of runs against us. It was especially good to have Graham Buttanshaw with us again, after he broke his leg in a game near the start of last season.”
Leeds v Manchester
On a lovely batting strip at Elland Cricket Ground, Leeds batted first and several players made starts, with Carew top scoring with 32, Buttanshaw 31 and Arnold 28. Manchester bowled well, with Cowling, Thompson and Gill all taking 2 wickets. Leeds ended on 186 for 9.
Manchester had a promising start, but the combined bowling of a strong attack, with Christian taking three wickets and Buttanshaw 2, reduced them to 63 all out. The match was closer than the score line suggests. .
The team for the match against Manchester was:
Phil Arnold (Captain) Calverley, Dan Tyler ( St Georges, Leeds), Heston Groenwald ( All Hallows, Leeds), Graham Buttanshaw ( Otley), John Bavington ( St Johns Great Horton), Brunel James ( Cleckheaton), Simon Moor ( Huddersfield Parish Church), Richard Carew ( Chaplain to Archbishop Sentamu), Dan Christian, (Eccleshall, Sheffield), Philip Gray ( St Margaret’s Ilkley), John Hawley.
The next match for Leeds is against a strong Diocese of Litchfield team in Sheffield on the 5th of June.
Last year the Leeds team narrowly missed out on cup success, losing in the final to the Diocese of London. (Read the report from the final here)