Dawson returns for Walsden

Walsden CC held a sponsors day at the club on Sunday as a thank you for their contributions to the club and to show them the new net facilityPictured from the left are Walsden CBC cricket chairman Allan Stuttard, sponsor Colin Greenwood, Walsden officials Jack Greenwood and Trevor Dewhirst, Steve Duncan of the Community Foundation for Calderdale and Walsden CBC chairman Jon Green

Walsden CC held a sponsors day at the club on Sunday as a thank you for their contributions to the club and to show them the new net facilityPictured from the left are Walsden CBC cricket chairman Allan Stuttard, sponsor Colin Greenwood, Walsden officials Jack Greenwood and Trevor Dewhirst, Steve Duncan of the Community Foundation for Calderdale and Walsden CBC chairman Jon Green

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Walsden have retained their eight-point lead at the top of the Central Lancashire League’s Premiership going into a second succession double-header.

Wicketkeeper/batsman Matt Dawson returns to give a full-strength side for the home game against Milnrow on Saturday and the trip to Norden on Sunday.

Second-from-bottom Milnrow look destined for the drop to the Championship but they have a dangerous Pakistani professional in Babar Naeem.

Norden are fifth and their title chance appears to have slipped away. The prize wicket for Walsden will be that of South African Michael Price, who always seems to score heavily against them.

Last Saturday only one over was possible against Littleborough, who were five without loss before play was washed out.

Walsden recovered from a modest start to beat Clifton by 95 runs on Sunday.

James Rawlinson and Steve Barker were early victims of paceman Steve Cheetham after Walsden had been sent in at Scott Street.

However, Jake Hooson made a patient 76 and figured in stands of 75 with Nick Barker (34) and 66 with Josh Gale, who thumped a quick 42, to lift the home total to a useful 217 for nine.

Off spinner and captain Dean Morris took five for 81 and Cheetham four for 30 in two bursts.

Clifton were 66 for two in reply but never really looked likely to threaten the home total and three wickets apiece for Richard Sladdin and Joe Gale dismissed them for 122 and clinched another five points for the title hopefuls.

Walsden seconds banked another five points in their championship quest on Sunday when Clifton were all out for 180 in reply to their 200.

The thirds will provide some Bank Holiday Monday action at the club when they host Astley and Tyldesley.