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Malik's big hit not enough for victory

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: August 13, 2014

Leek's Nadeem Malik was in fine form with the bat at Longton.

Leek's Nadeem Malik was in fine form with the bat at Longton.

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NADEEM Malik's unbeaten 96 was not enough to give Leek victory at Longton.

Malik was well-supported by Greg Willott (47), Alex Mellor (34) and Brian Mellor (33 not out) as Leek amassed 259-7 – but honours finished even after a high-scoring contest.

Rain reduced Longton's reply to 48 overs and they eventually closed on 246-5.

Dave Wheeldon (64) Richard Holloway (63), Ed Jones (41) and Dave Fairbanks (40) all shone for the hosts, while Alex Thomson returned decent bowling figures of 4-63 for Leek.

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Leaders Stone saw their 16-match unbeaten run ended by high-fliers Hem Heath at Trentham Lakes. Hem Heath had Muhammad Jahangir (4-45) and Abdul Razzaq (3-53) to thank for restricting the visitors to 194 all out.

Stone remain 15 points clear, despite that slip up, but they would have ben hopeful of extending their fine run after a fine century from Luke Cheadle (113).

Razzaq (48) led the runs chase for Hem Heath, which was carried on by wicketkeeper Spencer Byatt with an unbeaten 60, which included eight fours and two sixes, to take the hosts to 195-7 and a three-wicket success.

Second-placed Knypersley were unable to take advantage of the front-runners loss, as they were surprisingly beaten on their visit to Wood Lane.

The victors, who stay in the relegation zone, were staring defeat in the face when they sipped to 169-9 in pursuit of Knypersley's 193-9.

Tim Maxfield (46) and Samiullah Khan (37) had made early contributions, but it required the cool heads of Ross Coates (37no) and Steve Norcup (16no) to secure a priceless win for the hosts with just five balls remaining.

Knypersley's innings was built around opener Dan Ball's 85, while Maxfield picked up 3-38.

Wood Lane remain 18 points from safety after third-from-bottom Checkley beat rock-bottom Burslem by four wickets.

Winless Burslem made a nightmare start to the clash when Kyle Melis' 3-15 helped to reduce them to 35-6.

Rutvik Botadra (52no) and Chris Roberts (38)led the recovery as Burslem limped to 118-9.

To their credit, the hosts fought valiantly in the field and had a chance of victory with Checkley on 88-6.

But Richard Williams then struck 35 not out to push Burslem closer to the relegation trapdoor.

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