Sport

Cricket season is ready for off

THE Lancashire League and Ribblesdale League cricket seasons get underway this weekend with all the clubs expecting a lot from their professionals.

THE Lancashire League and Ribblesdale League cricket seasons get underway this weekend with all the clubs expecting a lot from their professionals.

In the Lancashire League, most of the Hyndburn sides are tipping either current title holders East Lancs or Nelson - whose pro Joe Scuderi has stepped down to amateur level - for the top spot.

However they are hoping to make an impression of their own in the summer.

Church are confident big-hitting Ruven Peiris will break the club record of 1250 league runs.

Enfield, meanwhile, are awaiting the arrival of South African Alviro Petersen as he is involved in a 20-20 competition at home. Captain Mas Ahmed, however, knows he can come up with the goods when he arrives. "We know he is quality," said the skipper.

Accrington have former pro Tama Canning back in the fold and are aiming to head towards mid table after a second-from-bottom finish last time out.

And Rishton are hoping that New Zealander James Franklin can help them avoid the wooden spoon position again.

In the Ribblesdale League, Great Harwood captain Russell Whalley can see his side being the bridesmaids again.

They finished runners-up in the league and were beaten by double winners Read in the Ramsbottom Cup final. With Read's pro last time out, Peter Sleep, dropping into the amateur ranks, they will once again be a forced to be reckoned with.

Baxenden, with Kevin Jelley as the new captain, are hoping pro Jonathan Harvey will perform with the bat for a top six spot.

And Oswaldtwistle Immanuel have paid out a bit more money on Indian Raja Ali - another player who is a force with the bat.