Leyland prepared for battle with underdogs

PHOTO. KEVIN McGUINNESS.
Leyland batsman Andrew Makinson in action at Chorley
PHOTO. KEVIN McGUINNESS. Leyland batsman Andrew Makinson in action at Chorley

Leyland will not underestimate ‘giant killers’ Longridge in this weekend’s crunch ECB National Knock Out clash.

Longridge dumped Northern Premier Cricket League Division One league leaders Leyland’s title rivals Chorley out of the cup last month.

And with a place in the final 16 of the national competition up for grabs, Leyland captain Dave Makinson says the club are preparing for a tough battle against the Palace Shield side on Sunday.

He said: “We have a chance to go through to the last 16 of the country if we beat Longridge.

“We try to treat every team as though they are a threat.

“We played them last year in the national knockout and we won comfortably, but that was just one game and we will not underestimate them.”

Leyland’s game against Kendal was washed out at the weekend, and Makinson was pleased the three games that went ahead did not alter their grip at the top.

Blackpool slipped up against their local rivals St Annes and are now 10 points behind the Fox Lane club in second, whilst fourth-placed Barrow drew with third-placed Chorley and Fleetwood dropped to fifth after losing at Netherfield.

Makinson said: “We were fortunate that one of those three teams Blackpool, Fleetwood and Barrow who all played did not get a win.

“If one of them had won they would have had a big advantage.

“It absolutely poured it down, even if it had stopped raining there were small lakes developing all over the pitch.

“It was 4.05pm before it stopped raining.”

Leyland travel to face Penrith before they host Longridge in the cup on Sunday.

Leyland will be without Andrew Makinson and Dale Vardy for the double header.

And Makinson is preparing for a hard test despite Penrith’s lowly league position as they sit second bottom of the table.

He said: “Penrith are not a bad side, they have got quite a few good players but it is a tough league this year.”