THE ECB Bradford Premier League season may only be approaching its second weekend, but a bellwether fixture is already scheduled to take place tomorrow.
It pits big title favourites Hanging Heaton and New Farnley – the sides tipped by most observers to be fighting it out at the business end of the table all season – together at Bennett Lane.
Talk of gaining a psychological advantage upon the other with victory may be inescapable, but Tewits captain Gary Fellows, for one, is keeping calm and focused at this early stage of proceedings ahead of the game with Farnley, who had a difficult first day in their rain-affected opener with Woodlands.
Fellows, whose Heaton side were stymied by the weather last weekend after closing in on victory in their opener against Farsley, said: “You are playing Bradford League cricket and plenty of other teams will be thinking to themselves: ‘if we can get to the last month of the season, we have got a chance.’
“There are certainly a lot of other talented sides about. As much as other people might look at two or three clubs, every year there is probably four or five clubs that potentially can win it.
“We go into every game looking to win. But Farnley are a fantastic team who have evolved and grown year on year.
“They are going to be a very strong side and I am sure it will be a very good game of cricket.
“Initially, at this point, it is playing some good cricket and getting some points on the board and you do not want to look too far ahead.”
Elsewhere tomorrow, Woodlands make the trip to Methley, while reigning champions Pudsey St Lawrence play host to Bradford and Bingley.
Farsley head to Townville and promoted Wrenthorpe entertain Cleckheaton. Lightcliffe host Undercliffe.
In Championship One, Pudsey Congs head to relegated Scholes, with early leaders Morley, whose paceman Matthew Dowse took a stunning 8-20 last Sunday, playing host to East Bierley in an attractive looking fixture at Scatcherd Lane.
Wakefield St Michael’s host Keighley and Hartshead Moor welcome Baildon.
Gomersal are at home to Bankfoot and Batley make the journey to Ossett.