Staxton ready to defend top flight crown

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The local cricket scene swings back into action this weekend, with both the Readers Beckett League and Derwent Valley League getting underway on Saturday.

Beckett Premier Division champions Staxton host 2011 winners Heslerton, who will be looking to Aussie Tim Clarke and Andrew Slaughter, who joined from Stamford Bridge.

Promoted Kirkbymoorside and Cloughton will be looking to consolidate their places in the top flight, and Kirkby have strengthened their ranks to that effect.

No fewer than six players have transferred to play for the club, with pace bowler Daniel Meredith, who has moved from Burley Wharfedale.

Filey and Seamer, both relegated last season, will be the favourites to feature at the top of the division A table this campaign.

Also new to the division are Scalby and Settrington, who both won promotion into the division and will be doing their level best to stay there.

Division B looks a relatively even league, with Wykeham looking to bounce back up at the first time of asking after suffering relegation last season.

They will be looking to pace bowler Dave Pearson to fire them back up.

Martin North and his young Scarborough 3rds side will be looking to make a strong start in their new surroundings following their superb achievement in gaining promotion last season.

Three sides gained promotion from the Derwent Valley League into Beckett League Division C last season, and Ravenscar, Heslerton 2nds and Ebberston 2nds will all be looking to make use of the extra five overs allotted in the top four divisions.

Newcomers Mulgrave will no doubt be looking to impress in the Derwent Valley Division A.

Hospitals Rugby Club have moved their base from McCains to Scarborough RUFC’s Silver Royd base, and they will be looking to bounce straight back up to the Beckett League.

Kirkbymoorside’s 2nds will no doubt benefit from the influx of players into the club and will be looking to move out of division B at the first attempt.

The area’s basement division, division C, is anyone’s for the taking, with Ravenscar 2nds boosted by the signing of Scarborough News sports editor Andy Bloomfield (pictured), who adds the village club to the long list of teams he has turned out for in his glittering career to date.

Hunmanby will no doubt be a strong proposition after they decided to withdraw their first team from the Beckett League rather than their 2nd XI.

The Home Guard Sunday Cup also gets under way this weekend, the pick of the first round ties seeing league debutants Mulgrave travelling to Lockton, while Hunmanby will visit Seamer 3rds.

Evening league cricket gets under way on Tuesday May 7.