Local cricket: Saints captain Smith wary of threat posed by Saltaire

Mark Robertshaw top scored for Pudsey St Lawrence last Saturday.
Mark Robertshaw top scored for Pudsey St Lawrence last Saturday.
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AFTER three straight defeats Pudsey St Lawrence captain James Smith will be taking nothing for granted as basement side Saltaire visit the league leaders tomorrow.

The Saints were cruising at the top of Division One after 10 victories in their first 10 games but recent defeats to New Farnley, Woodlands and East Bierley have cut their lead from 25 points to four points.

And Smith is well aware that his team will have to be back on the top of their game to guard against another possible reverse tomorrow.

He said: “We’re at home against Saltaire tomorrow and my message to any of my boys is; don’t underestimate anyone, because you’ll get caught out.

“This division is full of quality and Saltaire are a good side, even though their results haven’t suggested that. There’s always a possibility of an upset and my boys have to remember that.

“This is the kind of game which becomes a tough task on the back of three defeats.

“Winning is a habit, and so is losing and we’ve got to get out of that habit and get ourselves back on the ball tomorrow.

“We’ll only win by playing our best cricket and not underestimating Saltaire. They’ve got some very, very dangerous players.

“They’re strong in the bowling ranks and have hit 200-plus runs in games this season, so they will be tough.”

It’s a big weekend for second -placed Woodlands as they host third-placed Hanging Heaton in the league tomorrow and then entertain Pudsey Congs in the semi-final of the Heavy Woollen Cup on Sunday.

Woodlands go into the weekend in good form after seeing off Saltaire by 92-runs last week to close the gap on Pudsey St Lawrence while Heaton defeated East Bierley by 118-runs last time out.

Elsewhere tomorrow, fourth-placed Cleckheaton host Farsley while Pudsey Congs travel to Bradford and Bingley, New Farnley take on East Bierley and Lightcliffe are at home to Undercliffe.

In the other Heavy Woollen Cup semi-final on Sunday, Townville host Hoylandswaine.

Other cup action on Sunday sees Methley take on Wakefield Thornes and Hunslet Nelson playing Wrenthorpe in the Central Yorkshire League’s Jack Hampshire Trophy semi-finals, while in the Aire-Wharfe League Waddilove Cup semi-finals Burley host Horsforth and Otley are at home to Bilton.