Brighouse waiting on three

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BRIGHOUSE are hoping to announce the arrivals of three first team players early next year as they look to improve on this summer’s disappointing showing in the Bradford League.

Chris Maloney, who returned to the club last year from Halifax League outfit Shelf, has stepped up from second team skipper to lead the firsts.

Will Smith, who took over the captaincy during the course of the latest season when Greg Osbourne stepped down for family reasons, remains at the club.

The Russell Way outfit are hoping that Smith will be able to show his best form once free of the concerns of captaincy.

Smith’s former Spen Victoria teammate Adam Brown has returned to the Cleckheaton club, who also play in Division Two.

“He was offered the captaincy and felt it was too good an opportunity to miss,” said Brighouse cricket chairman Peter Bradley.

While Brighouse will miss Brown’s runs at the top of their order, Bradley is hoping the potential newcomers, when added to the vast bulk of last season’s side, will give them a little more all-round strength for 2012.

Bradley said two of the potential newcomers were bowlers who could also bat while the third was a batsman who could bowl.

Brighouse had also lined up a second team captain to come in from outside the club.

“Things should be sorted out in the New Year,” he added.

Bradley said that while Brighouse had facilities which were the envy of many clubs, running costs had increased since the 2004 switch from their old town centre ground now occupied by the Tesco store.

They were not bankrolled by the sports club any more and sponsorship was hard to come by in the current financial climate.

He said Brighouse could not match the big fees offered to players by some other clubs but he believes progress is being made.

“We’re moving in the right direction. Eric Charlesworth is doing wonders with the juniors and although most of them are quite young they are getting closer to the second team.

“The Bradford League have given us a couple of slaps in recent years, some we would take issue with, but we are starting to build up the cricket club from within.

“We have got things in place and we are moving forward.”