Captain James Stansfield confident Scholes can secure instant top-flight return

Scholes captain, James Stansfield
Scholes captain, James Stansfield

SCHOLES first-team captain James Stansfield has vowed his side will bounce straight back into the Premier Division of the Bradford League.

Stansfield’s side were relegated from the Premier Division in their maiden season.

Despite the setback the skipper has reflected positively about the clubs overall progress.

He said: ‘‘The club has come a long way in a short space of time,” he said. “We’ve gone from Central Yorkshire League to Bradford League and straight up.”

He also believes the lack of experience of some players led to a poor season with the bat.

He said: “We tried to mix and match – but you can’t do it in such a strong league.

“We have lots of players who have never played in the Premiership and it’s taken them a little while to adjust.

“But we can learn from this year and be better for it’’.

While the general feelin feelingwas that the batting could have been better, Stansfield was full of nothing butpraise for his bowlers.

“The seamers bowled pretty well for us all season,” he added.

The club’s pre-season target was to have a good cup run and stay in the division.

And it wasn’t all doom and gloom for Scholes as they got the cup run they desired when reaching the semi-finals of the Priestley Cup.

Unfortunately they lost to a strong Pudsey St Lawerence side with the game turning out to be tighter than first thought.

Scholes were restricted to 106 all out after electing to bat, Stansfield top-scoring with 25.

And the captain’s view that the bowling was Scholes’ strength during 2016 was borne out when they prevented St Lawerence from reaching the small total until the 36th over.

Scholes have won four games so far this year, defeating Cleckheaton, Morley and Pudsey Congs.

And while they are capable of beating the teams immediately around them in the standings, the club needs to bridge the gap between themselves and the very top teams in the division.

Stansfield is hoping to do this by adding some more players to his side as he looks to put together a team capable of gaining promotion back to the top-flight at the end of the 2017 season.

He said: ‘‘We’ve added two batsmen, one of who bowls and we’ve added a left-arm spinner which we’ve needed after Danny Cross left us.”

Overall the captain remained positive about his club’s progress and reiterated his desire to come back a stronger unit next year.

Scholes bow out of the Premier Division this Saturday with a trip to Farsley.

The fixture earlier in the season was abandoned but, with the rain forecast to stay away over the weekend, the Scholes players will be looking to end the season on a positive note.