Make or break weekend for Burnley with cup crown at stake

BUSY WEEKEND: Michael Brown is confident Burnley are ready for their make or break triple weekend-header
BUSY WEEKEND: Michael Brown is confident Burnley are ready for their make or break triple weekend-header

Burnley chairman Michael Brown believes the weekend triple-header could make or break the club’s season.

The Turf Moor outfit are involved in two separate cup competitions - which includes a derby - while the latter of three fixtures provides the opportunity to get off the mark in the Lancashire League.

Burnley travel to the Neville Gee (Recruitment) Ground tonight knowing that victory over Lowerhouse would dislodge their rivals’ Twenty20 crown while enhancing their own stock in the limited overs competition.

Brown’s men currently top Group C after beating Colne by five wickets while Charlie Cottam’s West Enders endured a 24-run loss against Nelson.

“It’s a big weekend,” said the former Hampshire and Middlesex county cricketer. “We aren’t going to win the league - it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work that out. The focus is always on winning silverware. You start the season aiming at three trophies. We’ve got two left to play for but we’re coming up against some very good teams.

“We’re just focussed on beating Lowerhouse. We beat Colne in the opening group game and Lowerhouse lost to Nelson. They’ll be heavy favourites and they’ll want to prove that the Nelson result was a blip.”

After the recent animosity between the two clubs, Brown added: “We’re not in a position to be talking our own cricket up at the moment. We just need to play to our potential and try to compete.

“We don’t exist to pitch ourselves against Lowerhouse. We exist to play good cricket and attempt to win matches. All this Twitter banter is very boring and tiresome. It’s good to have rivalries, but it should stay out on the cricket field.”

Burnley will then continue the defence of their Worsley Cup title as they travel to Centre Vale for a quarter-final tie with Todmorden tomorrow. And the fixture will then be reversed 24 hours later as Andrew Sutcliffe brings his side to Turf Moor for a league encounter.

“There’s more of an onus on our cup performances because of our poor league form,” said Brown. “We’ll be going all out to stay in both cup competitions. Last year’s Worsley Cup final was a brilliant day. It was an absolutely fantastic occasion and we’d love to be involved in it again. It would be a great achievement to make it there.

“Todmorden’s pro (Michael Neser) has had a fantastic start to his Lancashire League career. He took six wickets against us in April and then hit 70-odd with the bat. We’ll have to play well to combat that.”

Meanwhile, Burnley Cricket Club is delighted to announce an agreement with Myprotein.com to become the sponsor of Turf Moor Cricket Ground.

Myprotein, part of the Hut Group, is Europe’s number one online sports nutrition brand, stocking more than 400 premium quality products to improve health, physique and performance.

Brown said: “We are delighted to sign this significant sponsorship agreement with Myprotein.com. We are extremely pleased to be associated with such a well-known brand with high quality products and hope this can be the start of a fruitful partnership for both parties.”

Andy Duckworth, CEO of Myprotein said:“Burnley Cricket Club is a fantastic amateur cricket club which has a strong history of producing high quality cricketers as well as providing opportunities to youngsters to participate in cricket. We are delighted to be associated with them and look forward to supporting them in continuing this strong tradition.”

The club is also delighted to announce two other large sponsorship arrangements. Firstly, Donald Race & Newton, the personal and corporate legal specialists, have signed a five-year agreement, while CarFinance247 has agreed a two-year sponsorship term.

After tonight’s derby, ‘House have the opportunity to climb to the league’s summit when they face Rawtenstall at the Worswick Memorial Ground tomorrow before entertaining East Lancs in the Worsley Cup quarter-final on Sunday.