History makers, record breakers, champions. Whichever way you look at it, victory for Burnley in Sunday’s Worsley Cup final would be incredibly impressive.
The Turf Moor outfit could re-write the Lancashire League handbooks as victory over Nelson at Seedhill would be the club’s third successive capture of the competition’s silverware.
Man of the match Michael Brown and Qasim Ali engineered the first triumph in 2013, firing 82 runs apiece to down Haslingden on home soil.
And Rawtenstall were the opposition last term as David Brown’s knock of 71 combined with Cole Hayman’s figures of 5-39 secured an 80-run win at the Worswick Memorial Ground.
Now captain Bharat Tripathi has labelled the forthcoming finale as the biggest game in Burnley Cricket Club’s 125-year history.
“It’s our biggest game ever,” he said. “It’s absolutely huge and the fact that we can make history makes it even bigger.
“It’s the Worsley Cup and it could be our third successive win in the competition. It’s the showpiece of the Lancashire League and one of the greatest prizes in league cricket.
“We want to go down in history as a club that has achieved a feat that nobody else has. It’s massive for us and to win a third would be unbelievable.
“It would be a great achievement. It would also give us that confidence going in to our final games in the league.”
Tripathi added: “There’s not really been a secret to our success but the big games lift the team. We always find something in the big games and we’re excited to do our best.
“To captain all three successes is a great accolade for me personally, but it’s all about the team and not the individual.
“I would take great pride in captaining and leading a side to such an achievement if it happens though. Victory would be a team achievement and everybody at the club wants to see it.”
Burnley are in the hunt for four trophies in total. And Tripathi is targeting victory over East Lancs at Alexandra Meadows tomorrow to move them even closer to that haul.
“We’re looking forward to the weekend,” he said. “It’s a massive one for us with two huge games.
“It’s easy to talk about Sunday and focus on the Worsley Cup final but we’ve had our lead cut short by two points in the league so that’s also important.
“We’re only six points clear now so every game is a cup final for us. We need to pick up 12 points tomorrow.”
He added: “Four trophies wouldn’t be a bad return at all. Achieving four competition successes would be fantastic.
“The trophy shelf is filling up a bit more now and we’re really happy with our achievements.
“The squad’s attitude has been unbelievable and they’ve been fantastic. We’re going in to games with real vision and ambition.
“The two coming up are two of the biggest trophies up for grabs. Everything we’ve done so far has been a huge bonus but the real test is about to begin.
“These trophies are the big priorities and they are the biggest rewards.”
Meanwhile, Lowerhouse haven’t yet admitted defeat in the race to retain their Lancashire League crown according to chairman Stan Heaton.
The defending champions, who have won three titles in the last four years, are 32 points behind league leaders Burnley with eight games left to play.
The West Enders welcome bottom side Rishton to Liverpool Road’s Neville Gee (Recruitment) Ground today as they bid to crank up the pressure on their rivals.
“We haven’t given up hope,” said Heaton. “We’re only three wins behind Burnley and there’s still a quarter of the season to play yet.
“We want to finish as high as we can and I think a top three or four finish would signal a good season for us when you consider the players that we lost.
“There’s certainly no disappointment at the moment. The season isn’t over yet. “
Heaton added: “At present two cup semi-final appearances and a top four finish in the league would signal a hugely successful season.
“It’s been very pleasing and the club is still moving forward in all sections.
“We are very optimistic about the future. We’ve still got Burnley to play yet so there’s still plenty to play for.”
Meanwhile, in the Houldsworth Solicitors Ribblesdale Cricket League, the temperature is increasing in Padiham’s push for promotion.
A four wicket loss to Settle at the Arbories - the club’s third defeat in succession following reversals to Cherry Tree and Clitheroe - ensured Salesbury moved in to the top two in Section B.
Salesbury are on an upward curve as three victories in four outings saw them move 10 points clear of Padiham.
Padiham host basement side Edenfield today, rivals Salesbury entertain mid-table Brooksbottom at Ribchester Road while table-toppers Euxton, who are eight points clear at the summit, welcome Ribblesdale Wanderers to Balshaw Park.
Elsewhere, Read’s eighth consecutive win has moved them in to the top three.
Kyle O’Connor’s side face Oswaldtwistle Immanuel at New Lane today.