KEIGHLEY are pursuing promotion from Division Two of the JCT600 Bradford League under a new skipper.

Former Harden captain Richard Wear has taken over from Freddie Pearson as the season nears its halfway point.

Wear explained: "Freddie has had some off-the-field issues to deal with and it was felt that I could give it more attention.

"I captained Harden for three years, including promotion from Division Two in 2012 and also led them when they were relegated last season, where I learned more than I did in the previous campaign!"

The 23-year-old added: "I am enjoying it so far at Keighley, where we have a young squad but a very talented side.

"When we played Idle last weekend, the oldest player was 24 but we have Richard Robinson and Mark Beckett back this weekend to add some experience."

Saturday is set to be a crucial contest with third-placed Keighley visiting second-placed Saltaire before the Lawkholme Laners host struggling Windhill on Sunday.

Wear said: "We have already beaten Saltaire this season by 77 runs, so we take confidence from that , but anyone can beat anyone in this division so we won't be taking Windhill lightly on Sunday either."

Idle were beaten by 68 runs at Lawkholme Lane, with Wear adding: "In many ways, it was the ideal performance, with everybody chipping in with the bat. We seem to be better batting first ."

Keighley have won five matches batting first in the league this season and two batting second but they have also lost two batting second.

Keighley's visit to Saltaire is not the only key clash in Division Two this weekend.

On Sunday, Undercliffe, who have a ten-point lead over Saltaire, make the trek to Roberts Park.
On Saturday, the Intake Road club are at ninth-placed Spen Victoria.

Idle, who are fourth, have already won more games than in the whole of last season (five against four). On Saturday, they host Hartshead Moor, who ended their winning start in the third game of the season, while the Cavendish Road club have a free date on Sunday.

Baildon, who are two points behind in fifth, are at home to Bowling Old Lane on Saturday and visit Spen on Sunday.