O’Connor eager to avenge the cup loss to Settle

Imran Khalid
Imran Khalid
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Read skipper Kyle O’Connor is hopeful that the momentum of a derby win will help the club avenge their Ramsbottom Cup loss against Settle.

O’Connor’s side take on the Ribblesdale Cricket League leaders at the Marshfield Ground tomorrow, just a matter of weeks after their 170-run defeat to the same opponents at Whalley Road.

Visiting paid man Imran Khalid inflicted the damage on that occasion, hitting 18 boundaries on the way to a knock of 114. The tie was then settled by William Davidson’s six-wicket haul.

“The cup defeat gives us that drive to avenge it,” said O’Connor. “We know their strengths now, but we didn’t play to our strengths last time. We need to make sure that we’re at the top of our game this time.

“I’ve got a lot of respect for them as a club because their side has been built from within. The key man is their pro. If we can remove him early then we’ll give ourselves a chance.”

O’Connor, though, also acknowledges the potential of his own professional. South African Keegan Petersen claimed a couple of victims that day and top-scored for the hosts with 62.

“Our pro is key to us,” O’Connor outlined. “He thinks quickly on his feet, he’s always coming to me with ideas and he’s great to have around. He’s had a positive impact on the squad.

“We need to make sure that when he’s batting we bat alongside him. We need to be patient with him because he’ll control the game. We’ve got to go with him and support him.”

Meanwhile, Read’s top four finish last term has been rewarded with a LCB Knockout Cup tie with Bradshaw on home soil on Sunday.

O’Connor said: “We’ve played against Kamran Younis before and Stuart Hornby plays for them. I’m looking forward to playing against him having been a team-mate of his before.

“It would be nice to progress. It’s always our aim to get in to the competition so it we would like to progress and test ourselves against the best clubs in the county.”

Elsewhere, Callum Clarke’s Padiham are still looking for their first victory of the campaign following defeat to Read at the weekend.

They entertain fellow strugglers Brooksbottom at the Arbories tomorrow, with the fixture scheduled to start at 1-30 p.m.