A DAY after toppling New Farnley in the All Rounder Cricket Bradford League Premier Division, Bradford & Bingley could not follow up with a victory in the Priestley Cup.

The Wagon Laners lost a topsy-turvy second-round encounter at home to Championship Division One Morley by 24 runs.

Neither side managed to bat out their 50 overs but Morley’s 152, which seemed a tad light during the tea interval, assumed much bigger proportions when the hosts slumped to 25-5.

If early wickets lost was an issue then runs per overs was not for Bradford & Bingley, and skipper Matthew Duce seemed to be pulling things round, firstly with Patrick Dixon in a partnership of 32 for the sixth wicket and then with Jack Hartley for the seventh wicket.

But when their stand had reached 29, Hartley was controversially run out, with the pace bowler adamant that he had made his ground in running a two.

That made it 86-7, and when Duce was bowled for 44 soon after, trying to hit into the leg-side, the game seemed up.

However, the way that Bradley Reeve (17no) and Alex Masterson (11) then batted made Bradford & Bingley wonder if their approach had been too gung-ho as the last wicket fell on 128 in the 44th over.

The same criticism can be levelled at Morley, who were 88-2 at drinks.

They failed to capitalise on the solid work of opener James McNichol (67) and lost their last seven wickets for 43, with pace bowler Bailey Wightman (3-23) and spinners Ed Brown (3-28), Reeve (3-23) and Dan Revis (0-25 off 10 overs) either proving economical or dangerous or both.

For Morley, pacemen Matthew Dowse (3-21) and Ollie Holliday (3-21) did the business from the rugby end, with left-arm spinner Akash Senarathna (1-22 off 10) beating the bat numerous times at the pavilion end.

Duce said: “I thought that we had restricted Morley well after they got off to a good start and we had a chaseable total, but trying to get back from 25-5 is always going to be an uphill battle.

“As soon as you then lose a couple of extra wickets it makes it even harder, and Jack getting run out and me getting bowled were key dismissals because we thought that we could have taken it.

“Jack didn’t think he was out and I didn’t either but that was the umpire’s decision and then I got out, but the tail then showed that if a few of the batters higher up or myself had stuck about a bit longer we could have got over the line.

“On the whole though, Morley played better cricket overall.”

Duce added: “The league is going all right and I am pleased with how we have started.

“We proved by beating New Farnley that we can compete with the big boys and beat them and we need to keep that up next week against Woodlands, who are leading the way by quite a bit.

“We can be right up there at the end but a win can move you up a few places and a defeat can move you down a couple of places such is the tightly packed nature of the division.”

Morley’s experienced spinner Dave Nebard said: “James set us a really good platform but we failed to capitalise in the 10 overs after drinks.

“We didn’t bat our overs (they were dismissed in the 46th over) and we would have been happy with 180 or 200 but you could question our shot selection.

“We needed to take early wickets having only made 150 but fortunately that was what we did and at 25-5 it was a different game.

“Matthew Duce played really well in the middle part of the innings and looked like he could win the game on his own.

“They were scoring at a good rate but Ollie Holliday came on and bowled straight and picked up a couple of wickets and gave us some momentum again.

“Bradford & Bingley will probably feel aggrieved at the lbw (for Kyme Tahirkeli), which we thought was a good shout, and we felt that Jack (Hartley) was run out but he was not particularly happy.

“On another day we might not have got those decisions but we will take them and we are though to the next round, although we haven’t put in a 100-over performance yet in the cup.

“We have a new captain, a new overseas player and three new players into the first team, but we have a really good model and structure at the club and hopefully we can achieve promotion come September.

”We stay loyal to our current players, we don’t want to change our team every year by bringing in players in in February or March.

“We try and develop our own players and give people the chance to play at a decent standard of cricket, whether that be the Premier Division or Championship One.”