Reality kicking in for Burnley skipper

Anthony Farran 12.07.2015 Lowerhouse CC v Burnley CC, Worsley Cup semi-final played at Lowerhouse CC, Pictured; Batter Lowerhouse Captain Charlie Cottam, and Burnley Wicket Keeper Chris Burton
Anthony Farran 12.07.2015 Lowerhouse CC v Burnley CC, Worsley Cup semi-final played at Lowerhouse CC, Pictured; Batter Lowerhouse Captain Charlie Cottam, and Burnley Wicket Keeper Chris Burton

Bharat Tripathi admits that reality is kicking in now that the season is entering the business end.

With nine weekends remaining Burnley sit top of the Lancashire League tree, have booked their place in the final of the Worsley Cup, reached the semi-final of the Twenty20 competition as well as making the quarter-final of the LCB Knockout Trophy.

The Ron Singleton Trophy holders travel to Dill Hall Lane tomorrow night to fight for a place in the Twenty20 final against Enfield before hosting Church in the league on Sunday where they’ll hope to widen their eight point advantage over Ramsbottom.

Beyond the forthcoming weekend, the Turf Moor outfit tackle defending Ribblesdale Cricket League champions Clitheroe at Chatburn Road in their county cup tie on July 26th and they are at Seedhill on August 9th where victory over Nelson would see them create Worsley Cup history.

“We’re really happy with how things are going,” said Tripathi. “Getting in to a semi-final and a final shows it’s getting real now and it’s going to be an interesting second half to the season.

“The end is in sight and that brings a little bit more pressure, but we’re handling it well.

“We know we’re in and among it in all competitions. We won’t turn a blind eye to that but we’ll try and focus on each game as it comes.

“This could go down as the greatest season in the club’s history and it would be magnificent to achieve it all.

“It would be the greatest achievement by any club in Lancashire League history. With talk of change, it would be great to do it in the league’s current format.”

Burnley asserted their dominance over Lowerhouse with a fourth victory of the campaign, courtesy of a seven-wicket win at Liverpool Road in the cup. David Brown scored an unbeaten 91 for the visitors.

However, Tripathi is refusing to allow the club’s season be hinged on local bragging rights.

“Bragging rights aren’t good enough,” he said. “We’ve given ourselves a chance so it would not do us justice if we came out of it all with just one trophy.

“We are a better team than that. We don’t want to base success on bragging rights.”

Meanwhile, West Enders’ chairman Stan Heaton has labelled tonight’s Twenty20 clash with Rawtenstall as the “most important” game of the season.

Having exited the Worsley Cup and county cup ‘House are left to fight on two fronts.

Charlie Cottam’s side could book their place in a final at the Neville Gee (Recruitment) Ground tomorrow night and will be looking to bridge the 24-point gap over the table-toppers when they take on Accrington at Thorneyholme Road on Sunday.

“The Twenty20 game has taken even more precedence,” said Heaton. “The desire to win is certainly there and any trophy we can get our hands on would be a huge bonus. There’s still everything to play for in the league and we can reach a cup final, so tonight is very important.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to get to a final so we need to make sure that we take it. For now it’s the biggest game of the season.”