6:52am Wednesday 10th July 2013
By Matt Donlan
BROOKSBOTTOM’S delighted skipper Julian Marcroft believes his side’s Ramsbottom Cup final appearance will be a huge boost for the club’s profile in a cricket saturated area – and he wants them to enjoy every second of the showpiece event.
The Ribblesdale League new boys stunned Great Harwood in Sunday’s semi-final and can now look forward to a date with 2011 winners Ribblesdale Wanderers at Cherry Tree’s Preston Old Road at the end of this month.
And the experienced Marcroft wants his players to cherish the experience.
“It’s a great moment for everyone at the club and we have to make the most of it and take everything we can from the occasion because you never know when you will get another chance to play in a final,” said Marcroft.
“I think we have been a little bit fortunate that some of the big boys like Clitheroe and Read went out in the first round on a bowl out but even so to get to the final is a terrific achievement in our first season.
“There is already a lot of excitement and people are booking mini buses for the trip to Cherry Tree already and we intend to make an occasion of it.”
The support from not only Brooksbottom’s home village of Summerseat but also the surrounding area would be a major boost for the profile of the club and Marcroft knows that can only be a good thing.
“We are in quite a cricket saturated area round here with the likes of Ramsbottom, Edenfield, Greenmount and Woodside all close by,” added Marcroft. “So hopefully this final will make people in the area take a bit of notice of us.”
The July 28 showpiece will actually be Brooksbottom’s second final in two years.
In 2011 they got to the final of the Manchester and District Cricket Association’s HC Smith Trophy when they lost to Premier Division champions Swinton Moorside.
“We were the first Division One club to get there and that was a good achievement,” added Marcroft.
“But this is different. We wanted to step up into the Ribblesdale League and to be honest I think the standard surprised us a little bit.
“I knew of the likes of Jon Harvey as an outstanding player but some teams have three or four men like him in a side.
“But we have done okay so far with a few wins – and to be honest there are some games we lost that we should have won.
“We said that we wanted to look at consolidating and avoiding the bottom two places and relegation.
“That is still the aim for us, as it is for all the other teams in the league. But we can certainly enjoy the final.”
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