Fixtures revealed for champions Blackpool Cricket Club, St Annes and Palace Shield

Blackpool Cricket Club begin the defence of their Northern Premier League title at home to Leyland on April 23 – a game featuring two clubs who have won six of the last eight NPL championships.

Wednesday, 12th January 2022, 12:30 pm

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Blackpool are chasing a hat-trick of titles, having also won the one-off competition in the Covid-hit summer of 2020. Their first away game is at Netherfield on April 30.

On the opening day St Annes visit Penrith, who regained their NPL place at the first attempt last year.

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Blackpool CC won the Northern League for a record 18th time last year

St Annes then welcome Kendal to Fylde a week later.

Blackpool, who played most of last year’s fixtures away due to work at Stanley Park, welcome St Annes on July 2 with the return at Vernon Road on the August Bank Holiday Monday, August 29.

The season ends on September 10, when Blackpool host Fulwood and Broughton and St Annes head to Garstang.

Vernon Carus have also been promoted from the Palace Shield, Fleetwood and Morecambe dropping down.

Blackpool are also defending their 40-over crown and have a first-round bye when the competition gets under way in July. They will host the winners of the Fulwood and Broughton v Penrith tie.

St Annes visit Chorley in round one for the right to visit Leyland or Vernon Carus.

Five-time NPL champions Fleetwood have dropped into the Palace Shield and visit Chorley club Eccleston on day one before their first league meeting with Kirkham and Wesham on April 30.

Fleetwood end the season with a September 17 derby at home to Thornton Cleveleys, who host Great Eccleston on the opening day.

Kirkham and Wesham’s first assignment as they bid to build on an excellent 2021 is at home to Barrow.

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