TEAMS from around the area are all set for the start of the new cricket season, weather permitting.
Wickets are pitched for the 2012 Pontefract Cricket League campaign this weekend when the first round of matches take place.
No fewer than five clubs from the Hemsworth and South Elmsall area wil be looking for good fortunes in this year’s competition, not least South Kirkby, whose first team narrowly missed out on promotion from Division 2 last season.
Kirkby start their campaign with a trip to Hatfield on Saturday and chairman Reg Mills is predicting big things from the club’s first team.
“We fell away towards the end of last season when we picked up a few injuries to key players,” he said.
“I think this could be the year for us though. We’ve got strength in depth this season and some great young players who will push the more senior players all the way.
“We’re not overly confident but I think we have a good chance of doing well.”
Kirkby have bolstered their squad with the arrival of Chris Beaumont from Hemsworth MW, and Matty Wilson and Ryan Davies.
The club passes on its good wishes to Nathan Hurcombe, Daniel Birkes and Greg Johnson, who’ve all moved on.
Dave Rollins will skipper the team again this season, and he was part of the team that warmed-up for the new season with a good run out at Carlton.
Dave Bowering will be second team captain.
They host Stainborough 2nds in their Division 4 opener on Saturday.
Ryhill and Havercroft will also be pushing for promotion from Division 4 after narrowly missing out last year.
Led by captain Les Turner and vice captain Mark Perrin, Ryhill open with an away game against Monk Bretton 2nds.
Ryhill 2nds, led by captain Edward Kaye and vice captain Matthew Hyde, will also be hoping to push for promotion in Division 8 and they start at home against Garforth on Saturday.
Ryhill are also looking for scorers for the season and players to bolster their squad.
Contact Ian Bragger on 07815 497689 for more information.
Elsewhere, Frickley Colliery start their Division 1 season at Old Sharlston while Nostell St Oswald visit Rothwell.
In Division 2 Hemsworth MW are also on their travels at Whitley Bridge, while Hemsworth 2nds host Fenwick in Division 7.
Frickley 2nds will be searching for a good start when they welcome Allerton Bywater to Westfield Lane in Division 3 and Nostell 2nds host Normanton in Division 8.
See this week’s Hemsworth and South Elmsall Express for all the latest sports news from around the area.