BAXENDEN have quietly crept up into fifth place in the Veka Ribblesdale League - and now they are aiming higher.
Dave Usher's side were battling in the bottom half of the table but three wins in their last four games has moved them into the top six spot they wanted at the start.
They saw off leaders Clitheroe last week and this week, it was local rivals Oswaldtwistle Immanuel who suffered at the hands of the resurgent Bash.
"We have won three of the last four and, more importantly taken seven points, so that's 21 points which has obviously moved us up the table," said the skipper who has spent a lot of the season sidelined with a ligament injury
"Last week, when we beat Clitheroe, nine of the players were on holiday and I had to hobble through. We didn't expect to win but we played well. We feel that if we had an opening bowler, we would be up there challenging for the title.
"Our batting line-up is strong but we are reliant on Pete (Usher, Dave's brother) and the pro Gally (Indika Gallage) for the wickets. They have taken the brunt of the bowling and I think they have got around 50 wickets each and the next bowler has around 13. Opening bowlers are hard to find though."
It is tight in the middle with four points separating fifth to ninth place.
"This weekend is important because it is a double header and, if we lose a few, we could drop back down again," added the captain. "We lost to Whalley earlier on in the season and Edenfield are only a couple of points behind us but we have been playing well."
Oswaldtwistle continue to have a miserable season, stuck at the bottom and they face Padiham and near rivals Great Harwood this weekend.
And one-time title hopefuls Harwood, who are now 12 points off the top, will be hoping to keep Baxenden at bay and and finish higher than the fourth place they currently occupy. But they suffered a bad loss to title challenges Barnoldswick with Sri Lankan pro Jeeva Kalatungu making 111 as they set 264-9. Harwood were dismissed for 152 with Allan Armer top scoring with 56.
But Harwood bounced back on Sunday in the Ribblesdale League Thwaites 20/20 final against Read - although it was tight.
Harwood had dominated proceedings in the original washed-out game and Read were expected to mount a stronger challenge.
Harwood elected to bat but former Rishton bowler Frank Barden removed dangerman Russell Whalley for only two and in his next over took the prize scalp of pro Martin Nurse with the score on just 40. However useful contributions from Paul Houldsworth (35), Matthew Howarth (42) and Liam Deasey (24 not out) got Harwood to a respectable 158-5 from their 20 overs.
Read looked in trouble at 26-3 after five overs but sub pro and promising Lancashire bowler Oliver Newby was single handedly chipping away at the target for his former club. Newby had good support from Kyle O'Connor (16) as they put on a stand of just over a 100 before O'Connor was run out in the 16th over, and Read required 27 off the remaining four overs.
Newby went after the remaining runs but two tidy overs from Chris Ramsker meant Read required 11 runs off the final over to win the game bowled by Stuart Maher.
Newby crashed the first ball of the final over straight to Paul Newton on the boundary who caught the ball but, as he was falling over the boundary rope, he dropped it back in play. There was confusion over whether he had caught the ball and Read scrambled three runs.
The next ball yielded one run and Newby then smashed Maher for six to level the scores. Read required one run from the final three balls and an attempted single off the penultimate ball resulted in a run out.
Read's Andrew Bennett faced the last ball and he could only edge it to the jubilant wicketkeeper Armer to spark wild celebrations at a packed Cliffe Park. As a result of losing fewer wickets, Harwood were declared the winners and will represent the Ribblesdale League in the Grand Final.