Talk of titles would have seemed ludicrous not so long ago at Read Cricket Club.
But 11 successive victories for Kyle O’Connor’s side has put them right back in contention in the Ribblesdale Cricket League.
With six games remaining the Whalley Road outfit have closed the gap on defending champions Clitheroe to 16 points, though the leaders have a game in hand.
After the bowling of Andrew Rushton (5-32) and Elliot Lowes (4-36) helped inspire a four wicket win over Earby at the weekend, O’Connor said: “We are playing very well and we’ve won 11 games straight.
“We just need to keep going and take that form in to games against Cherry Tree and Whalley at the weekend, especially with Clitheroe playing Settle too. That could open things up a bit.
“We thought we had blown it mid-season but we’ve put a string of wins together and we’re playing with confidence. We’ve put ourselves in a good position now.
“The title is achievable but we are taking it game by game. If we get to the end of the month unbeaten then things might change.”
O’Connor added: “The lads deserve a lot of credit because they’ve kept going.
“It’s testament to the lads that we’re now back in contention. Who knows what could happen now?
“It’s been quite a while since we last won it. We’ve had a few second place finishes and we’ve only finished outside the top four once since.
“It shows that we’re a strong, competitive club so we just need to keep building and maybe this will be our year.
“Everyone believes we can do it and we’re playing like a side capable of achieving it. We were complacent mid-season but we’ve built some consistency.
“This is the closest I’ve felt the group has been for a while. There’s a close bond at the moment.”
Read host Cherry Tree at Whalley Road tomorrow and travel to Station Road on Sunday to face Whalley.
Meanwhile Padiham face a key weekend in their push for promotion. Callum Clarke’s men tackle third place Salesbury tomorrow, taking an eight point advantage in to the fixture at the Arbories.
They then travel to Brooksbottom on Sunday.