Ribblesdale Wanderers in touching distance of cup silverware

Ribblesdale's Brannon Varley bowls at Earby batsman Chris Walton in Wanderers' semi-final win
Ribblesdale's Brannon Varley bowls at Earby batsman Chris Walton in Wanderers' semi-final win

Ribblesdale Wanderers have the opportunity to claim back the Ramsbottom Cup trophy this weekend after Baxenden usurped them as champions last season.

Led by skipper Ian Britcliffe in 2011, the Church Meadow side beat Oswaldtwistle Immanuel, Salesbury and Whalley before outclassing rivals Read in the final at New Lane.

Britcliffe and professional Muhammad Wajihuddin took three wickets apiece while John Braithwaite added two as Read culminated the innings on 236-9.

In the reply paid man Wajihuddin went on to steal the show, smashing an unbeaten 102 from 96 deliveries which included eight fours and five sixes.

Alastair Marsh had opened with 27 and Brannon Varley added 37 midway down the batting order as Wanderers claimed a thrilling four-wicket triumph.

This time, captained by Martin Briggs, their route to the final included wins against Barnoldswick, Oswaldtwistle Immanuel and Earby.

They’ll now lock horns with league newcomers Brooksbottom for the coveted piece of silverware. The pair have played each other twice already in the Ribblesdale Cricket League with Brooksbottom coming out on top on both occasions .

The final will take place at Cherry Tree on Sunday with wickets pitched at 1 p.m.

Elsewhere, in the Clitheroe and District Cricket League, Calderstones were crowned winners of the Fred Booth Memorial Trophy as they beat Low Moor in the final. Chasing 65, the victors knocked off that total with just four wickets down as Farouk Butt hit an unbeaten 29.

In the league, Clitheroe St James beat Chipping Ramblers after overhauling their opponent’s 97-run total with two overs to spare.

Despite not having a fixture, Sabden still head the table. They instead defeated Rathmell in a friendly with the final ball of the game. Rick Wright and Phil Parker retired on 25 and Simon Capstick supported them well with a knock of 19 for Sabden.