BATLEY gave their Central Yorkshire League Premier Division survival hopes a massive boost with an emphatic 101-run victory over Mirfield Parish Cavaliers last Saturday.
The Mount Pleasant men have closed the gap on second-bottom Altofts to four points with Birstall just one further ahead going into the final three matches of the season.
Fawad Maqsood hit five fours and a six on his way to a top score of 46 and with support from Shahban Rehman (31) and Mohammed Bashir (33), Batley reached 175-9 from their 50 overs.
Overseas all-rounder Naveed Ghany claimed 4-21 in reply, while Tariq Hussain claimed 3-32 before Mohammed Bhoola collected the final two wickets in his only over as Parish were dismissed for 74.
Birstall slipped to third-bottom following a 128-run defeat at Methley.
Chris Holliday (48), Matthew Waite (47), Nick Connolly (31) and Hamid Khan (29) all made useful contributions to Methley’s 220-8, with Kevin Watson (3-44) and Paul Marlow (3-60) among the wickets.
James Deverell made 26 in reply but Birstall were dismissed for 92, with Connolly (3-10) pick of the bowlers.
Northowram Fields climbed out of the bottom two following victory over Wakefield Thornes and they have been replaced by Altofts, who lost by six wickets at Townville,
There was also a shock at the top of the table as Wrenthorpe lost for the first time this summer, going down by 133 runs against New Farnley.
Wrens remain nine points clear of Methley at the top of the Premier and they bounced back on Sunday defeating Townville by 61 runs in the Heavy Woollen Cup final at Liversedge to clinch a second piece of silverware this season.
Moorlands could yet have a say in the relegation scrap because if they finish in the top two of Division One, only one side will go down.
First division leaders Moorlands are 11 points clear of third placed Wakefield St Michaels following an eight-wicket derby success over Hopton Mills last Saturday.
Samuel Gardiner (38) top scored for Mills but they were dismissed for 95 as Steve Lane (4-27) and Nadeem Hussain (3-17) impressed before Alan Sumner (33no) helped Moorlands to a 13th win of the season.
Moorlands are just two points clear of second placed Ossett, who earned a seven-wicket win over Wakefield Thornes A.
Ossett also won the Yorkshire Council Supplementary Play-off final last Sunday, beating South Kirby by 72 runs at Hunslet Nelson.
New Farnley take on South Yorkshire side Whitley Hall in the Senior Competition final at Methley this Sunday.
Farnley defeated Methley by five runs in last Sunday’s semi, while Whitley overcame Aston Hall by 10 runs.