Champions Triangle keen to follow up in special year

TRIANGLE have every incentive to repeat last year’s heroics and retain the Towergate Halifax League title.

Carl Fletcher’s side won 16 of their 22 games to run out champions by a 10-point margin from Booth, their hosts for tomorrow’s opening fixture.

It is the Grassy Bottom club’s 150th anniversary season and Fletcher’s vice-captain Dave Turner said they would love to mark the occasion with a major trophy success.

“It’s a big year and while I’m not involved on the social committee, there are one of two things in the pipeline to mark the event.

“We’ll all be trying to win something and we are also hosting the Crossley Shield final down there. John Moore has been our second team captain for ever and he and a few of the older Triangle players would love to play in a final there.”

The firsts are sure to go into battle brimful of confidence following the return to the club of star fast bowler Kurtis Whippey after a spell in the Bradford League.

“It’s a massive signing,” said Turner. “It was well publicised last season that we won the title in spite of being short of bowling.

“Peter Madden injured his back which meant I bowled 230 overs last year and Carl also bowled a lot. We ended up bowling when we really needed to come off.

“There was a lot of pressure on Carl and he should be able to concentrate a bit more on his batting this year.

“Also, you need to bowl sides out to get full points and Curtis should help us to do that.”

Robert Cole is back from Northowram HT and may start off in the seconds or thirds while former trophy-winning skipper Roger Smith has made the short journey back some Sowerby bridge.

Triangle are a little weaker on the batting front with Nathan Cavalier taking a year out. Turner hopes the middle-order man will regain his enthusiasm after finding it hard going last summer.

However, Triangle are unlikely to be short of runs if Christian Silkstone can get close to last year’s 1,044 league runs with strong backing again from Steve Senior, John Lord and Dan Crosland.

If Booth’s improved drainage manages to save tomorrow’s rain-threatened fixture, Turner is expecting an informative contest.

“They only lost one game in the second half of the season, to Old Crossleyans, and if they had won that it might have made it interesting for the last game of the season, which was called off anyway.”

Turner picked out Thornton and possibly Copley, who won the Parish Cup last August and have Craig Taylor back, as other possible threats.