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Black Sheep Yorkshire Champions Trophy
Updated: Thursday, December 31, 2015 20:53

Whitley Hall retained their Black Sheep Yorkshire Champions Trophy by defeating Wrenthorpe for the second-successive year in another engrossing final at Elsecar.

With one eye on the threat of rain and the possibility of run rate coming into play, Wrenthorpe skipper Gary Fellows chose to put Whitley Hall in after winning the toss.

Wrenthorpe normally like to bat first and put their opponents under pressure from building a big score, so it was unusual to see them opting to bowl.

Perhaps they expected assistance from the pitch with an early start, but Whitley Hall stood up to the test.

They didn't allow the early loss of skipper Alex Fletcher worry them as Tom Glover (3-32) and Joe Ellis (2-42) used the new ball well.

Whitley Hall's score of 204-9 owed much to a lot of useful contributions from Alex Welsh (37), Chris Siddall (37), Jim Tasker (33) and man of the match Neil Longhurst (32).

They even overcame the loss of dangerman Jaco Castle, last year's final man of the match for a duck, clean bowled by Fellows.

Wrenthorpe were mindful of the need to keep an eye on the run rate when they replied. An opening stand of 41 between Fellows (24) and Danny Wood (14) appeared to have given them a sound base, but then five quick wickets saw them slump to 73-5.

When Wrenthorpe reached 100 with seven wickets down the game looked up, but such is the depth of their batting you can never write them off.

Former Yorkshire batsman Bradley Parker, coming in at number seven, is still a dangerous proposition and he soon changed the complexion of the game.

He hit two sixes and five fours in a fine innings of 51 that threatened to turn the game around until he was trapped lbw by Jaco Castle.

At that point the Whitley Hall fans were able to prepare their celebrations. When Neil Longhurst dismissed wicketkeeper Jonny Smith the game was up for Wrenthorpe.

The Black Sheep Champions Trophy resides in South Yorkshire once again and it remains a competition that Wrenthorpe have yet to win despite featuring in two thrilling finals.

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