Derby clash will open new season

THE cricket season starts this weekend with a tasty derby clash for two of the area’s clubs.

The County season got off to flier for Yorkshire and local clubs Brighouse, Lightcliffe, Hartshead Moor and Rastrick will be hoping for the same this weekend.

Badger Hill begin their season at the Easter.

There can only be one winner at Russell Way on Saturday and that is derby cricket at its best when Brighouse host near neighbours Hartshead Moor (1.30pm).

Brighouse team manager Darren Emmerson is confident they will do well after their close season recruiting. Moor chairman David Baldwin reckons he has a squad that can take him to at least fifth in the table, a far cry from three seasons ago when they were trying to avoid the wooden spoon and re-election.

The Russell Way square and outfield, despite the winter, is looking in superb condition and a credit to cricket chairman Russell Livesey.

Lightcliffe with their array of new big guns travel to Idle and will be aiming to go undefeated this season.

The decision was made before the end of last season to push for promotion to Division One after just missing out on the last game to Manningham Mills. The Wakefield Road club has pushed the boat out and hope to reward their supporters with promotion, hopefully as champions of Division Two.

They have a mix of experience in both the batting and bowling departments, as well as some talented youth players to select from.

All eyes in the Bradford League are on Lightcliffe.

Rastrick entertain Armitage Bridge in their Drakes Huddersfield League Cedar Court Conference game (1.30pm).

Despite losing players, they feel they have every chance of making a challenge for promotion.

Their new overseas signing Kalumith Madura Sanjaya De-Silva will hope for hard wickets for his off- break bowling and to also hit some runs, but he has been warned of the vagaries of the English weather and uncovered wickets.