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The champagne remains unopened

Winter League

Review of the Divisions 1 & 2 fixtures played on Wednesday 21 February

The champagne remains on ice and unopened for another week as Lower Hopton win 8-0 to delay the crowning of the 2024 Division 1 Champions. Anything less than a whitewash win for Lower Hopton over Clayton West would have handed the title to Thorpe Green A who were having a bye week. But that didn't happen as Lower Hopton showed dogged reluctance to hand over the title they have claimed for the last two seasons.

Regardless of what Lower Hopton may achieve in their last match of the season next Wednesday the destiny of the trophy will be decided by Thorpe Green. They need two points from their final match against Kirkheaton Con A to take all the accolades and become the 2023-24 Division 1 Champions.

With the Kirkheaton Con A v Golcar Lib fixture put back a week because of a funeral in the Kirkheaton camp there were just two other matches played last Wednesday.

Lindley BC A beat Meltham 6-2 to leave the Meltham side in real danger of filling the third relegation place. One point separates them and Clayton West and a final day meeting of the two teams provides a tense climax to the season. New Mill A's 6-2 win over Lowerhouses A had no impact on places at either end of the table.

A big 6-2 Division 2 win for Lindley Lib A over Denby Dale set up a final-day tussle for the second promotion place with the two teams now level on points with one match each left to play. That will start with Lindley Lib holding an 819-773 aggregate advantage over the Denby Dale side which would mean a huge turnaround to prove decisive in the Dale's favour. That will mean that they are dependent on taking more points from their fixture against Champions Cowcliffe A than Lindley Lib A collect from their match against Lindley BC B.

Any last-day nervous performances from these two teams could open the door for Milnsbridge A or Lindley Lib A to sneak past them and claim promotion for themselves. Milnsbridge A remain in the hunt after another rare 5-3 scoreline result as they saw off Lindley BC B to remain in contention as they go into the final day of the season. The Lindley BC B side are also mathematically still involved in the promotion fight but they will need to beat last day opponents Lindley Lib A 8-0 to remain in the frame but could still lose out to the other two contenders. Tense times indeed.

A 6-2 win for Brockholes A over Huddersfield Recreation Club A gave them a last day chance of avoiding a bottom three place but are now reliant on Lockwood Con A going down 0-8 in their final fixture next week against the same Huddersfield Recreation Club A side. Cowcliffe A completed their eighth 8-0 win of the season with Springwood A being on the wrong end of that scoreline this time and who now seem destined for a relegation place finish.

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