West Yorkshire League Division One front runners Whitkirk Wanderers and Rawdon Old Boys will clash, weather permitting, on Saturday in a vital game which could well decide the Division One title race.
Weather permitting, however, is the key phrase as neither side have been in action since February after a series of postponements, due to the heavy snowfall throughout February and March.
Whitkirk treasurer John Friend is adamant that the cancellations have not derailed his side’s fantastic campaign.
“We are still very confident of promotion,” he said.
“That was the target at the start of the season and nothing has changed.
“It’s true that the postponements have been very frustrating, because we are on a 10-match winning run so they have come at a really bad time.
“But there will be no rust within the side when we face Rawdon on Saturday.
“We have been training really hard so the lads will be ready.”
Rawdon chairman Ian Whitfield said: “This will be a very tough match. Whitkirk are a great team and, crucially, the only side we have lost to this year.
“It was a shame for us that we couldn’t get the game against Featherstone Colliery under way last weekend as they are the other side in the title race.
“Now we play Whitkirk on Saturday, so we could have got the fixtures played against two other top sides in consecutive weekends.
“The weather has certainly been more troublesome this season than last, but we just have to get on with it and perform against Whitkirk.
“It’s a game that may well determine who wins the title.”
In another weekend of little action, Beeston St Anthony’s extended their lead at the top of the Premier Division to five points with Leeds City in cup action, after their 3-1 victory over Headingley.
Kingsley Wetherald netted a brace for Beeston with Stephen Crawford grabbing the other goal. Substitute Jamie Bywater scored for Headingley.
Third-placed Ilkley Town had the chance to go above Leeds into second, but were unable to capitalise, after twice losing the lead to draw 2-2 at Horbury.
Jamie Miller and Josh Stacey scored the Ilkley goals while Robin Layton and Lee Spires netted for Horbury.
Knaresborough Town ran out comfortable 3-0 winners over Hall Green United, in the final match of the weekend.
Jonathan Maulin got the ball rolling for Town with a goal on eight minutes and a quickfire double in three minutes from Harry Croft sealed the victory.
Leeds City progressed to the semi-finals of the West Yorkshire League Cup thanks to a 4-2 victory over Otley Town with James Burgess bagging a brace for City.
Leeds Medics stopped the rot with a first point in three games, playing out a goalless draw with struggling Stanningley Old Boys at Weetwood in the Yorkshire Amateur League.
Steve Ledger’s side made an outstanding start to the season – winning 14 successive league games – before suffering back-to-back defeats against Stanley and Morley.
Their second-bottom visitors have collected more points on the road than on home soil this season and had the better of the league leaders for long spells.
They prevented a shot on their goal until the 25th minute, when Tom Smith’s effort was well-stopped by Jamie Bull.
A Bull double save helped ensure it remained level at the break, with Tom Stewart and George Rutherford having good chances to nick it late on.
Medics are three points clear at the top but must be wary of Drighlington who have four games in hand, while Stanningley should avoid the second relegation spot on this display.
One side sure to be playing Championship football next season are St Nicholas, beaten 5-2 by Athletico thanks to braces from Mohammed Ikraz and Moammed Qasim.
The top-flight newcomers have garnered a reputation for exciting football, without a draw at home in eight games, while a poor road record has helped sink Saints across the season despite undoubted resolve.
The only game that beat the weather in the Championship saw Beeston St Anthony’s and Thornesians slug out a 2-2 draw in tough conditions at Beggars Hill.
Beeston took a two-goal lead with Steve Wardman and Tony Garth on target either side of half-time. But Harry Lee, in his final game for the visitors before moving abroad, got a timely goal and Craig Roberts scored to preserve a point.
In Division Two, Morley Town Reserves struck a big blow by beating leaders Garforth Crusaders 7-2 – with whom they drew level on points at the summit.
Neil Rollings and Danny Kershaw hit the back of the net and helped Garforth to two first-half leads, but doubles for Ben Howarth and Dalton Pearson sealed the deal for the hosts.
The other contest, in Division Four, saw Leeds City III batter Thornesians Reserves 13-0, with Tom Harrison and Dan Ward both helping themselves to four goals.
Amid the terrible weather of the last month, the league are set to apply for a two-week extension to their season and expect to be granted it.
Most sides face at least two games each week on the current schedule.
The severe weather wiped out all the games in the West Riding County Amateur League, while in the West Riding County FA Challenge Trophy, Sowerby Bridge advanced to the quarter-finals with a 3-1 penalty shootout victory over Salts after the game had finished 2-2 in normal time.
In the Wakefield Saturday League Premier Division, a hat-trick from Liam Grimes helped third-placed Real Moor cruise to a 6-1 victory over Pontefract Town. The other goals came from Thomas Lenaghan and Michael O’Brien. Chris Burnett netted Town’s consolation goal.
Braces from Liam Keating and Adam Richardson saw Durkar defeat Pontefract Sports and Social 6-1 in Division One. Also on the scoresheet were Tony Craven and George Tinker.
In Division Two, Dewsbury Westside edged past FC Thornes 4-3, while Overthorpe FC were comfortable 5-0 winners over Crofton Sports Reserves.
In Division Two League Cup semi-final action, Nostell Miners Welfare enjoyed a 6-1 victory over Snydale Athletic Reserves and AFC Heckmondwike defeated AFC Sheaf 3-0.
Only one game survived the weather in the Harrogate League as Thirsk Falcons defeated Beckwithshaw Saints 8-1.
All games scheduled for Sunday were postponed due to snow and ice.