CAPTAIN Michael Farley says Radcliffe Cricket Club’s match on Saturday will be a “non-event” due to England football team’s World Cup quarter-final.

Radcliffe will be at home to Oldham in the Greater Manchester League Division Two B, but Farley believes it will be difficult for the players to concentrate on their game when Gareth Southgate’s team are taking on Sweden.

World Cup fever multiplied on Tuesday when England won their first-ever penalty shootout in the competition to beat Colombia.

And Farley says from experience the cricket game at the Racecourse will take second place in importance to what is happening in Russia.

“It’s a non-event,” he said.

“It’s a shame because it makes the game meaningless. Players will just be thinking about what’s happening in the England game.

“Everyone wants to win a game of cricket but they want to win the World Cup more.

“Your focus isn’t on what’s happening in the cricket.

“I played in a game in 2010 when England played Germany and you just couldn’t concentrate on the cricket.

“We stood on the field and you heard shouts coming from the bar from people watching England and you’re wondering what’s happening.

“I’ve seen in another league they are starting at half past nine in the morning if the umpires and players agree.

“Players can focus on the cricket and watch England.”

The Racecourse men are bottom of the Greater Manchester League Division Two B after suffering a four-wicket defeat at home to fourth-bottom Friarmere on Saturday.

See page 71 for a full-page picture special on the game.