Lance Shaw had a 20th birthday to remember in the Bradford League knockout final yesterday. Shaw, a member of the Auckland club championship-winning Papatoetoe side, in its first season after winning promotion to the senior grade last season, helped his Bradford and Bingley side to an unexpected victory over Woodlands in the Priestley Cup final.
Unexpected because Bradford and Bingley are a second division side who managed to win the League's open knockout prize. Shaw took 4 for 30 in eight overs to highlight the impact he has made with the club. Shaw, a fast-medium bowler, described by one critic as a "Ewen Chatfield with a bit more motor" is a brother of Auckland representative Gareth Shaw. He has played Under-17 and Under-19 cricket for Auckland, and just missed inclusion in New Zealand's side for the last ICC Under-19 World Cup which was held in Christchurch.
Shaw has taken 65 wickets for the club this season and has been asked back for next year, however, he has declined saying he wants to resume his university studies instead. His best effort to date has been 6 for 21 but probably the effort he cherishes the most is his first-ball dismissal of Pakistan international Ijaz Ahmed in a recent match.
Shaw got his chance to play for the club after they approached former Auckland coach Tony Sail for a pace bowler. He wasn't a well-known player but the club has been very happy with his efforts. The club is keen to be promoted to the first division in the league and at the moment is sitting in second place, with the top two teams to be promoted.
The Bradford League is celebrating its centennial this year and the achievement in winning the knockout is one of the more prestigious results for the country club.