READ kept up the pressure at the top of the Houldsworth Solicitors Ribblesdale League as they hammered near neighbours Whalley by nine wickets on Saturday.
Leaders Barnoldswick head the table by eight points after a 31-run success against champions Baxenden in the game of the day, but the Whalley Road side stayed in touch with a comfortable victory.
And the sides do battle this Sunday in a titanic tussle in part two of a weekend double header.
Hosting Whalley, Read restricted their visitors to just 76 from their 33 overs, as Jon Harvey (pictured) returned figures of 5-23 from 13 overs, while former skipper Warren Eastham finished with the superb analysis of 4-4-0-3!
Read cruised past the target for the loss of just one wicket, with Harvey unnbeaten on 29.
Meanwhile, Padiham also enjoyed a fruitful afternoon against Ribble Valley opposition.
Hosting Ribblesdale Wanderers, the Arbories side posted 211-8, with Kevin Hitchon top-scoring with 57.
And in reply, professional Chris Holt took a superb 8-54 as Padiham eased to an 81-run win, with Wanderers dismissed for 130.
This weekend, Padiham host Whalley on Saturday before a trip to Salesbury, while Read are at Clitheroe on Saturday.
In the First Division, Read seconds beat Brinscall by 45 runs.
Read made 128-9, with Elliott Artingstoll unbeaten on 63, before the village side were all out for 83.
Burnley Belvedere went down against Stacksteads by six wickets after being skittled for 89.
In the Second Division, Burnley Belvedere seconds crushed Brinscall by 93 runs.
The locals made 139-8, as Andrew Scambler took 5-35, but Brinscall were blown away for 46.
Padiham seconds enjoyed a 27-run success against Settle, after posting 137.
John Tarbox took 6-39 to help restrict Settle to 110.