Champions’ defence begins at Bradford & Bingley

CLECKHEATON CRICKET CLUB will begin their defence of the JCT600 Bradford Cricket League Division One title with an away fixture at Bradford & Bingley.

The Moorend side – who saw John Wood, brother Ian and wicket-keeper Mally Nicholas all named in the team of the season after winning back-to-back titles – begin their 2015 season on Saturday April 18.

In the same division last season’s third-placed finishers Hanging Heaton will begin their campaign with a home tie against newly-promoted Saltaire.

The second-placed Division Two challengers are sure to provide a stern test for the Bennett Lane men, but with skipper Gary Fellows in fine form last season they will fancy their chances of an opening win.

One-time Yorkshire all-rounder, Fellows, finished top run-scorer in the First Division with 885, finishing second in the averages to Mark Robertshaw (Pudsey St Lawrence).

In Division Two Spen Victoria will be looking to improve on last year’s 11th place finish when they travel to Bankfoot for their first league fixture.

Divisional rivals Gomersal meanwhile, have been handed a home tie for their first game of the season, when they take on Bradford side Bowling Old Lane.

After finishing in mid-table last season the Oxford Road men will be hoping for a winning start as they push for promotion.

Hartshead Moor, also of Division Two, have been granted a free week and instead begin their season on Saturday April 25 at Keighley.

Scholes’ first fixture in the JCT600 Bradford League sees them host Yeadon at New Popplewell Lane.

It is a first foray into the famous league for Scholes, who made a switch from the Central Yorkshire League following the 2014 season – and against relegated Yeadon they have a good chance of early league points.

In the second teams Division One Hanging Heaton begin their season with a tough away tie at Keighley.

But Heaton will be hoping for a winning start after an impressive 2014 campaign which saw them finish third.

Gomersal’s second string begin their Division Two season away at Bowling Old Lane. Whilst Cleckheaton’s second team host Scholes A at Moorend and Spen Victoria host last season’s basement club Bankfoot.

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