Reigning champions Baxenden have been boosted by the arrival of professional Kamran Younis as they look to reclaim the title and have a good run in the cup.
Bash have made a mixed start to the new season, with two wins in four games – with Sunday abandoned – but have been using old pro Baber Naeem who is now playing in the Central Lancashire League with Milnrow.
Younis has now arrived and will be available for tomorrow’s league clash with Earby and then Sunday’s Ramsbottom Cup first-round clash with Cherry Tree.
Captain Andy Caunce said: "We had a slight blip against Barnoldswick and I have to admit we were outbowled in that game.
"But as champions we still have a confidence within the squad and the atmosphere among the players is good.
"We have some young players who are pushing for a first-team place so there is a lot of competition for places."
Former paid man Naeem recommended Younis to the club and they are hoping for an outstanding season from the Pakistan all-rounder.
"Babar always tries his hardest and we’d like to thank him for his services to the club, but he felt it was time to move on and he brought Kamran to our attention.
"Babar said that Kamran is as good – if not better – than him, so we’re hoping Kamran can be as valuable as we have been told he is."
After last-year’s cup exit at the semi-final stage, Caunce is confident that Baxenden can go one step better and reach the final of the Ramsbottom Cup.
"We take every game very seriously and there’s always a possibility that we can win things," he said. "We’re a match for anybody on our day, especially in batting terms.
"But we take every game as it comes, despite other teams strengthening, we are confident we can retain our title."
Baxenden enjoyed a three-wicket victory at Ribblesdale Wanderers on Saturday.
Wanderers’ sub professional, Werner Coetsee – at Enfield – scored 59 for the home team while Liam Riley’s 6-75 restricted Wanderers to 143-8.
Baxenden found runs hard to come by but eventually squeezed home with 144-7.
Neither Oswaldtwistle or Great Harwood played at the weekend.