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Baxenden upset over cup clash

BAXENDEN chairman David Clegg was disappointed after he was unable to persuade the league to let his club play their Castlemaine XXXX Ramsbottom Cup clash at Whalley this Sunday.

BAXENDEN chairman David Clegg was disappointed after he was unable to persuade the league to let his club play their Castlemaine XXXX Ramsbottom Cup clash at Whalley this Sunday.

The last eight match was originally scheduled for this weekend at the start of the season although since then, the quarter-final dates have been changed to 20 June.

The league decided to delay the domestic cup so the Ribblesdale League teams who finished in the top four last season has more chance to fit in their Lancashire Cup clashes.

The Lancashire Cup games have to be played before June 13 - and it seems most have opted to play on that final weekend, although the four mayhave players missing as there is an Inter League Trophy match.

"The problem is that June 20 was originally a free date and some of the players have booked things for that date and can't play," said the Baxenden chairman.

"We will have three of four players missing. We went to the league and they said it would be discussed at an executive level but they told us we will have to play on June 20. It is disappointing for us as we will have a weakened side. We will give it our best shot though."

The League's Honourary Secretary Rod Slater confirmed: "All Ramsbottom Cup games will be played on 20 June."

Meanwhile Great Harwood will face Settle in the second round of the Lancashire Cup and there is something of a stand-off between the two teams. Settle want to play the game this Sunday but Great Harwood want to play it the week after - on 13 June.

"Our players just feel there has been a lot of double headers and would prefer to play on the 13th," said Cliffe Park Honourary Secretary Mick Deasey. "We had arranged to play Settle a couple of weeks ago but they postponed it then for the same reason."

If the two teams play on the 13th both will have players missing as on that day the Ribblesdale League team face the Central Lancashire League in the Inter League Trophy.

"We will have two players missing, which we accept, and so do they so I think that is why they want to play this week," added Deasey. "I am trying to get in touch with the LCB to see what will happen." As the Observer went to press, it still wasn't decided.

Meanwhile, despite 80 from Harwood pro Andy Crook and 95 from Allan Armer, unbeaten league leaders Read stole the points in the showdown of the top two from last season. Harwood set a difficult target of 244-8 but Read won on run-rate, thanks to half centuries from Craig Walton, Peter Sleep and pro Danny Law.

Russell Whalley's men, though, bounced back on Sunday, in the local derby with Oswaldtwistle Immanuel. Paul Dignan made 40 in Immanuel's 127 but Whalley's 43 and a half century from Chris Ramsker meant they passed the total with eight wickets to spare.

And Oswaldtswistle suffered a loss on Saturday against championship-chasing Settle.

Immanuel struggled with their batting after Settle set 202, especially with pro Raja Ali - a star last week - out for nothing.

The Indian won't have enjoyed his weekend as he only made 19 against Harwood.

Meanwhile, Baxenden paid-man Jon Harvey continued to come up with the goods - hitting two half centuries as his side had a mixed weekend.

They lost to Barnoldswick on Saturday as the lower order failed to support Harvey and Barlick pro Kulatunga was in stunning form with an unbeaten 84. But they battled back against Edenfield with a six wicket win - with both runs and wickets shared. They have a home tie against Blackburn Northern tomorrow as they look to move out of the bottom three.

Great Harwood make the trip to Padiham, who are struggling at the wrong end of the table.

And Oswaldtwistle will hope to refind their form when they make the trip to bottom club Whalley.


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