KIRK Deighton Rangers are heading towards the most crucial game of their season so far, as victory on Saturday would secure them promotion to Division One.
Rangers take on Hampsthwaite United at home, and are full of confidence having not tasted defeat in the league since September.
Fixture secretary Dan Marshall said: “The aim at the beginning of this campaign was to get promotion.
“We only need one more win to confirm this, as we have two points to be added on to our league total from our game against Kellingley Welfare in January, who played two unregistered players, meaning we have been awarded the win as a result. But our focus is on Saturday against Hampsthwaite United because a win means we are guaranteed to go up”.
Marshall, however, insists finishing top is probably out of Deighton’s reach, despite their current position as league leaders.
“In terms of the title, with the games in hand Newsome have, I honestly believe the title is theirs to lose,” he said.
“This will leave ourselves and Otley Town to play for second and third.
“We added to the squad just after Christmas to improve our fire power up front, and we are now really happy with the squad.
“Danny Grannon has moved to the area, having previously played for teams like Marine and Havant and Waterlooville, so he was a big signing for us.
“Josh Barden, who was part of our treble-winning side last season, went to play for Albion Sports in the Northern Counties East League Premier, but has been involved in our last few games, and has lifted the squad massively.
“We also have a young lad called Jake Young who plays for Farsley Celtic’s academy side. He joined us around Christmas time and whenever he has played he’s scored. At only 16, he’s an excellent player now, so it’s scary how much better he will be in a couple of years’ time.”
One side with their eyes firmly set on silverware, is Premier Division outfit Leeds City, who received a huge boost to their hopes at the weekend.
With current leaders Beeston St Anthony’s seeing their trip to Knaresborough postponed, Leeds took full advantage by pumping in a 4-2 victory over Field. Goals from Joe Liddell, Mark Ferguson, Luke Norman and Joe Tasker mean Leeds are now just two points behind Beeston, with a game in hand.
In Division One, Rawdon Old Boys retained their new-found position as league leaders with a 2-0 away victory over Kippax, thanks to goals from Craig Nicholls and Darren Nichols.
Whitkirk Wanderers remain very much in the title battle, after narrowly overcoming Oxenhope Recreation in a 4-3 victory.
A Lee Reilly brace and Scott Nelson strike in most games would have secured all three points for Oxenhope, but a tenacious Whitkirk side were having none of it, and secured the win through an Ashley Bell double and goals from Oliver Maude and Glenn Hendrix.
In Division Two, Garforth Rangers suffered a heavy 6-0 defeat, against a rampant Knaresborough Celtic side.
Only three games survived in the West Riding County Amateur League and all three came in Division One with leaders Ovenden West Riding moving 14 points clear with an 8-0 hammering of basement-club visitors Bradford.
Fifth-placed hosts Overthorpe Sports Club blitzed fifth-placed Tingley Athletic 7-2 while Salts Reserves climbed to third as visiting Hunsworth were blown away 6-1.
On the Wakefield League front, Rock Inn put six past Halton Moor in an all-Premier Division tie in the Jim Callaghan Cup, writes Mark Thompson.
In Division One, Fieldhead Hospital got their first win in 19 league games after a brace from Craig Townend and strikes from Ben Baines and Aaron Dewhirst edged out Red Lion Alverthorpe in a 4-3 thriller.
The only other game in the division was a battle between third and fourth as Fox & Hounds (Batley) and Ryhill fought out a 2-2 draw.
Division Two also had just two league games.
Nostell Miners Welfare and Thornhill United gained important wins amidst a tight top of the table.
Both played at home, Nostell Miners Welfare dispatched second-placed AFC Heckmondwike 3-0, while Thornhill beat Overthorpe Sports Club 3-2.
There was a decent spread of games in the Wakefield Sunday League as title-chasing Fryston AFC gave their goal difference a significant boost with a 9-1 romp at seventh-placed Hemsworth Miners Welfare.
Woodman Sports Club also moved third with a 3-0 win at Nostell Miners Welfare who dropped to fourth.
Premiership One leaders Shepherds Arms recorded a 1-0 success at Ferrybridge Progressive in the Premier League Cup while in the Landlords Cup Ossett Central WMC battered visiting Whitwood Metrostars 8-0.
The pick of the action in Premiership Two saw Horse & Jockey move top with a 10-0 crushing of bottom-club visitors, Crofton Colts.
Only four games took place in the Heavy Woollen League.
In the Heavy Woollen Challenge Cup semi-final, Mirfield Town ran out convincing 4-1 winners against Roberttown Rovers to book a place in the final against either Clifton Rangers or Linthwaite.
That semi-final takes place this coming Sunday at Overthorpe Sports Club at 11am.
Mount Pleasant extended their lead at the top of the Championship to four points after Faisal Adam (brace) and Adam Rawat both netted in a 3-3 draw with Scholes Athletic.
Second-placed Deighton WMC lost ground on the leaders as they lost 5-2 at home to Wellington Westgate.
Jake Kilburn fired home for Ravenswharfe, but they were held to a 1-1 draw by Wire Works to remain third from bottom in the table.