Clitheroe CC can produce 'something special' in the Lancashire League!

Former Lancashire League champions Clitheroe CC have the potential to achieve 'something memorable' this season, according to captain Peter Dibb.

By Dan Black
Thursday, 14th April 2022, 9:00 am

The Chatburn Road skipper is hopeful that last term's T20 and Worsley Cup finalists can go one better this year and add to the club's trophy cabinet.

They were beaten in those respective showpieces by Darwen and Lowerhouse when falling at the final hurdle and concluded the league campaign in fifth.

"We feel we have a team capable of challenging on all fronts," said Dibb. "After reaching both the T20 and Worsley Cup finals last season and challenging in the league until the last couple of weeks, I think we showed ourselves to be consistently one of the stronger sides in the league.

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DUNEDIN, NEW ZEALAND - JANUARY 27: Michael Bracewell of the Firebirds bats during the Super Smash Elimination Final match between Canterbury Kings and Wellington Firebirds at University of Otago Oval on January 27, 2022 in Dunedin, New Zealand. (Photo by Joe Allison/Getty Images)

"The top division of the Lancashire League is tough and the difficult games come every single week — but we have to tackle that challenge head on and make sure we turn up week in, week out. I know the character of the lads and they certainly won’t shy away from that."

The 35-year-old has a deep talent pool at his disposal this term and the 2017 titlists have armed themselves suitably over the winter months.

Ex-Bootle all-round Will Purser, formerly of Staffordshire, Cumberland and Lancashire 2nds, has joined Clitheroe's pursuit of silverware while Michael Bracewell has signed as professional.

The Kiwi star, who was selected in the full New Zealand ODI and T20 team for matches against the Netherlands, will miss the first couple of weeks of the new season as he awaits news on his visa, but club officials have acted quickly to land former England international Samit Patel as sub pro.

Dibb said: "We have depth in our first team squad and over the season we will need to be calling on a large pool of players if we are to have any trophies in the cabinet by September. You don’t win trophies over a season with just eleven players.

"We have recruited Will Purser over the winter and a new professional, Michael Bracewell.

"Will is a talented and experienced cricketer with a proven track record for winning. It has been evident early on that we’re getting someone who is driven for success and I think he is going to play a key role.

"Michael is coming off the back of a brilliant domestic season in New Zealand, resulting in him being selected for the national team. He’s a genuine all rounder and we feel the balance and quality he brings to the side is the missing piece of our jigsaw.

"We have a squad full of match winners. The ability of our lads isn’t a question for me, but it’s about delivering consistently on game days. I’m looking for strong character and individual responsibility this season - if we can demonstrate both of those then we have the potential to do something memorable."

Ahead of the Division One opener at home to Todmorden on Sunday, Dibb continued: "We start the season at home to Todmorden and I think it’s important that we try to build some winning momentum from that game.

"No game is easy but I think everyone that visits Chatburn Road this season will be in no doubt that they’ve got a game on their hands. We certainly don’t fear anyone.”