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Vets 10-Man League crunch time

Veterans League

A look at the 10-Man League fixture programme for Tuesday 27 September

This Tuesday (27 September) should have been the last day of the 2022 season but the July heatwave made a mess of that day's fixtures and we are still picking up the pieces from then with a total of 15 matches now scheduled for next week. Time to take a look at what can be decided this week.

In Division 1 if Lockwood Con or Kirkheaton Con do not get at least 4 points from their Tuesday matches then Golcar Lib 'A' will be the new Division 1 Champions. If either does reach that figure that will see the title race extended to the following week when Golcar Lib 'A' host Kirkheaton Con 'A' on the final day of the season with Lockwood Con 'A' at home to Marsh United 'A'. With the top three teams all still retaining an interest in the title although it is Golcar Lib's title to lose at present.

At the foot of the table Meltham need six points from their trip to Cowcliffe to secure Division 1 bowling for another year. They have picked a good time to meet the Cowcliffe team who have won only one of

their last eight matches which is an identical record to Meltham. Lindley BC 'A' will still need to get two big wins from their final fixtures away at Longwood and then home to Rastrick if they are to cash in on any Meltham stumble.

Four teams are still in the frame for the second promotion place in Division 2 with Milnsbridge already assured of the title and promotion. Two of those four contenders face each other and they are the two favourites to clinch second place but it is complicated. New Mill 'A' have a 5-point lead over Lowerhouses who they meet this Tuesday. However Lowerhouses have 2 matches to play and with the home advantage over New Mill this week they slightly edge the odds. Both teams are in form with Lowerhouses winning their last 5 and new Mill on a run of 7 straight wins.

Almondbury BC 'A' and Netherton Con 'A' are both poised to take advantage of any opening that occurs and both complete their fixture programmes this Tuesday with home matches.

It is much clearer at the bottom of the table with Brockholes 'A' already relegated and Thorpe Green needing 2 points from their final fixture away at Netherton Con to despatch Lockwood Con 'B' to Division 3 for next season.

Lots of interest in the outcome of the race for the second promotion place in Division 3 as well with at least five teams still capable of pinching the runner-up slot behind already crowned Champions Linthwaite Hall. Holmfirth 'A' currently sit 2nd but have played a match more than the next six teams who can all overtake them.

The stand out match this week is between Golcar Lib 'B' and Skel Windmill who are both real contenders for that second promotion place. Currently 5th and 3rd separated by one point and 4 points and 5 points behind the Holmfirth team. A close result could put both out of contention with Denby Dale poised to profit from any such scenario.

Looking at the latest form guide shows that Holmfirth 'A' have won their last 3 home games and lost their last 3 away ones. Forthunately for them their final fixture is at home against Springwood who desperate for points as well but these would be to position them out of the relegation zone so the outcome has impact at both ends of the table. Only one defeat in the last 7 for Skel Windmill but they have two matches left both against top opponents, Golcar Lib 'B' and Denby Dale and both away from home.

Lindley Lib 'B' are already relegated but who goes down with them is anyone of four teams who are within range. Marsh United 'B' currently sit in the 2nd relegation spot but have played a match less than all the other candidates but having lost their last 5 matches they are hardly in the best form of the season and look the most likely to succumb to the pressure and drop through the relegation trapdoor.

Meltham 'B' need two points from their final match which is away at Lindley BC 'B' to secure promotion from Division 4 with second placed Outlane well positioned to go up with them with a final match at home to lowly Brockholes 'B'. It would be a major surprise if those two teams didn't confirm their promotion this week.

It increasingly looks as though New Mill 'B' will be relegated and either Milnsbridge 'B' or Brockholes 'B' going down with them. the Brockholes side have won their last two matches to give them hope of survival but a visit to promotion chasing Outlane is not what they really wanted right now. Milnsbridge 'B' have only won one of their last six matches but with two home matches still to come there remains some hope of an escape.

With Kirkheaton Con 'B' already crowned Champions and Marsh Lib confirmed as their promotion partners the only outstanding matter in Division 5 is who is going to be left with the Wooden Spoon. Four points separate the bottom four teams and in an intriguing twist of fate they all play each other this Tuesday. Bottom placed Hemplow 'B' have home advantage over Kirkheaton C&BC 'B' who are fourth to bottom. That leaves Greenhead Park and Holmfirth 'B' facing each other with the biggest loser on the day likely to be left holding the cutlery.

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