THE A Division title race should be settled tomorrow as the only teams capable of winning it meet head on.
Hatherleigh, who were unbeaten and top for the first 10 weeks, take on leaders Sandford with the title effectively at stake.
Sandford have a 14-point lead over Hatherleigh with four games to go and 80 points to play for. It is hard to see Sandford not taking the title if they win.
A Sandford win might give third-placed Budleigh a sniff of second-place, providing they win at Lewdown. A Hatherleigh win will only ensure the existing one-two go up, order uncertain.
Hatherleigh have lost three of their last four games and were rained off in the other.
Mark Lake, the Hatherleigh captain, hopes a home game against Sandford will lift the troops.
“Sandford are a team who are on a great run and I see it as a great opportunity to end and stop our poor one.” said Lake
“ We don't become a bad team over night.
“It should be a good game and I think both teams know they will need to be at their best to win.”
Sandford lost the last time the sides met – and skipper Richard Foan hasn’t forgotten.
“Looking forward to an exciting game between two good teams in excellent positions,” said Foan.
“Hatherleigh are obviously on a bad run of form, which would worry them with Budleigh getting closer.
“For us it is a good gauge to see how we have improved after a disappointing result earlier in the season.”
Keeper Marc Bettis comes back in for injured seamer Jamie Palmer.
Chudleigh (146pt) will go a long way towards making themselves safe from relegation danger by beating second-bottom Brixham.
Plymstock (99pts) know if they lose to near neighbours Ivybridge (133) they are probably living on borrowed time. Ivybridge are the team Plymstock have to catch to save themselves from the drop.
Plympton are 22 points clear of the red zone with a derby date at Cornwood coming up.
Plympton beat Hatherleigh by one run in a last-ball finish last Saturday and hope that is a step towards safety.
“After a good win last week we are looking to put together a run of results,” said skipper Craig Donohue.
“Cornwood will be a tough game, it always is, but as we have shown this year we are really competitive against the better sides in the division.
Tom Richards comes in for Andy Walter at the top of the order.
“Walts is away and Tom has done well for us when called upon this year,” said Donohue.
Cornwood, finally out of it promotion-wise after a 10-wicket drubbing at Lewdown, are bringing in the youngsters with an eye on 2018.
“Tw of our promising youngsters are being given opportunities,” said director of cricket Duncan Boase.
“Ben Beaumont, who is 15, came in last week at short notice and scored 20 opening the batting, he also bowls medium pace and plays at his Devon age group.
“Josh Goodliffe, Adam’s younger brother, has bowled really well for the 2nd XI all season and get’s his chance to show what he can do.
“Josh has a real competitive attitude and bowls wicket to wicket.”