SETTLE first team stand alone at the top of the Ribblesdale League Senior table with the maximum 36 points following their 18-run victory at Cherry Tree.

The reigning champions elected to bat. allowing the opening pair of Baz Ward (27) and Jack Harrison (24) to establish a solid platform.

The middle order backed them up as Shakeel Richards (24) and Tom Davidson (16) steered the side to 97-4.

The rest of the innings was dominated by John Davidson (54no) whose unbeaten half-century was his highest score for the firsts. Matthew Simpson then hit 23no in short order to leave the visitors on 195-6.

Cherry Tree responded well with an opening partnership of 71 before spinner Richards (2-29) accounted for the pair. Paceman Simpson’s second spell gave him match figures of 4-65 while the ever-productive left-arm spinner Josh Mullinder had his side’s best average of 2-22 from his five overs

The hosts needed just 19 runs to win from five overs but with the total at 177 John Davidson ran out the last man to see off the challenge from Settle’s closest rivals.

Marshfield will be very busy this weekend with Saturday’s Ramsbottom Cup match against Salesbury and Sunday’s Lancashire Cup first round tie hosting Bury’s Woodbank CC.

Settle seconds were not so fortunate, losing to Cherry Tree in their opening Division One match. John Tarbox (4-38) claimed a caught-and-bowled in his opening over and Alan Lones (3-24) took his first wickets for the club, but the visitors reached 144-8

Settle’s reply saw Eddie Keighley (12) make his debut, and Tom Harris played well for 14, but it was an unbeaten 23 from Daniel Strickland which helped his team salvage three bonus points at 114 all out.