Heavy downpour denies derby rivals

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The local derby in the Yorkshire League between Sheffield’s United and Collegiate was washed out without a ball being bowled. Both sides have had a difficult start to the season and although the weather has not helped with its regular interference, both clubs’ reliance on youth has meant a tough baptism for several promising players.

The well-documented loss of senior players at Collegiate has resulted in lower scores to try and defend and the sole win against Doncaster Town, arrived with the inclusion of England Lion Joe Root at the top of the order.

The bowling has shown great promise with skipper Matt Dixon and Will Street amongst the wickets, ably backed by juniors Luke Shutt and Sufyan Sayed. Collegiate have been affected more by the weather with four cancellations and the stop-start nature of the season cannot have helped performances.

United, too, have maintained their admirable promotion of youth, with players from their highly successful junior section being given the chance to impress in the top league in the county. However runs are proving as tough to find as for the Collegiate line-up; after the solid platform often provided by skipper Paul Cummins and sibling Mark, the opposition bowling tightening the screw and although there have been flashes of promise from all in the line-up, the consistency is not there as yet.

Battling qualities are there for all to see, with points taken off Driffield, Appleby Frodingham and Doncaster Town but the winning line has been reached just once against Castleford.

Both sides remain in the bottom echelons and the task does not become any easier this weekend.

Both sides face tough opposition with Collegiate hosting fourth-placed Yorkshire Academy, while United make the short trip to Clifton Lane to face Rotherham Town, in joint second place despite a loss at the weekend at Driffield.

After 10 matches: Harrogate 64 pts; Barnsley 55; Rotherham 55; YACA 46; York 45; Driffield 45; Cleethorpes 39; Scarborough 36; Castleford 25; Collegiate 20; Appleby Frodingham 18; Doncaster 18; Sheffield United 18; Hull 15.