ROMIDA Sykes Cup holders Golcar face a massive challenge in what is undoubtedly the tie of the opening round when they welcome in-form Shepley to Swallow Lane tomorrow (1.30).
Steve Whitwam’s side (last year skippered by Ashley Pamment) had to do it the hard way last summer, when they knocked out holders Barkisland, and former winners Honley and Skelmanthorpe on the way to defeating Elland in the final.
And with victories over Delph & Dobcross and Elland already under their belts, Shepley will pose a massive threat to Whitwam’s side making an early exit!
Golcar do come into the game on the back of making a whopping 333-5 total last week against Broad Oak, but they certainly find the Marsh Lane attack, led by skipper Danny Glover, overseas man Leigh Millar, Ranjit Bandula and SP Singh a very different proposition.
Holmfirth’s home game with neighbours Honley is another tie that catches the eye, and the home side should have John Sadler back, although he has played the last two games in Derbyshire’s first team.
And with new signing Darren Lockwood making an immediate impression last week, skipper Gary Jakeman will be hoping to put one over his brother Richard, who is the Honley wicketkeeper.
The only other all-top flight tie is at Kirkburton, where Martin Welsh’s Slaithwaite have the unenviable task of tying down Yorkshire duo Charlie Roebuck and Matthew Wood, not to mention Andy Smith, Louis Aspeling et al, while keeping out the giant Greg Lambert and Tom Burkinshaw.
Of the other 16 ties, the Championship clash between Hall Bower and Kexborough could be an interesting game, but elsewhere it is difficult to spot any potential upsets where the Premiership clubs should all get through.
The two arrowselfdrive Central League clubs, Green Moor and Thurstonland will both find life hard against a re-invigorated Paddock and Thongsbridge respectively.
Paddock Shield holders Scholes are involved in another Holme Valley battle with Holmfirth, while Kirkburton are away to Shelley.
Clubs are reminded that all cup matches start at 1.00, and should weather intervene tomorrow, then Sunday is the allocated carry-over day.
Romida Sykes Cup
First round: Barkisland v Meltham, Broad Oak v Micklehurst, Clayton West v Almondbury, Elland v Kirkheaton, Emley Clarence v Lascelles Hall, Golcar v Shepley, Green Moor v Paddock, Hall Bower v Kexborough, Holmfirth v Honley, Hoylandswaine v Shelley, Kirkburton v Slaithwaite, Lepton Highlanders v Delph & Dobcross, Linthwaite v Scholes, Marsden v Armitage Bridge, Rastrick v Skelmanthorpe, Thurstonland v Thongsbridge.
Spectrum Interiors Paddock Shield
First round: Almondbury v Hall Bower, Armitage Bridge v Elland, Delph & Dobcross v Golcar, Honley v Broad Oak, Kexborough v Rastrick, Kirkheaton v Hoylandswaine, Lascelles Hall v Linthwaite, Meltham v Thurstonland, Micklehurst v Barkisland, Paddock v Clayton West, Scholes v Holmfirth, Shelley v Kirkburton, Shepley v Marsden, Skelmanthorpe v Lepton Highlanders, Slaithwaite v Emley Clarence, Thongsbridge v Green Moor.