CHAMPAGNE soaked skipper Peter Dibb praised his Clitheroe side’s spirit as they claimed the Ribblesdale League title at the end of an enthralling season.

The Chatburn Road outfit were crowned as champions early on Saturday afternoon when their game with Salesbury finally fell victim to the weather.

And while Dibb admitted winning the league while inactive was not the ideal way to claim the glory, he said that was only a minor setback ahead of the party of parties.

“It’s a great feeling,” grinned Dibb. “It’s been a long season and it is good to finally get home.

“We have come from second from bottom last season to champions this time around – and it is pretty much the same lads as last year given one or two additions so it’s great for everyone.

“I know it is a bit of a cliche but it has been a genuine team effort; we are not a one-man team.

“Every one of the lads in the dressing room has won us at least one game this year with the bat, ball or in the field so it’s a proper team effort.”

Both the umpires, Dibb and Salesbury skipper James Watson gave the fixture every possible chance, even though the outfield was sodden.

But after two rain interruptions there was no alternative but to call time with Clitheroe on 27-1 – but the five points from the abandonment landed Clitheroe their crown.

And Dibb added: “We did not want to turn up and not play.

“Some clubs may have had a bit of gamesmanship and maybe forgotten to put their covers on in the week but we made a genuine effort to play.

“You want to play; you want to win it on the field. You play cricket because you want to play games not sit in the dressing room – but I think we will take this one.”

The league has ebbed and flowed throughout a fine campaign and Dibb feels that his men are deserving champions.

“You don’t win it on just one game you win it over the season,” he smiled.

“And the table doesn’t lie. After 26 matches it’s been a good year, it’s been the best campaign I have been involved in not just because we have won it but because of who has beaten who.

“It’s been a great season and it’s a great feeling to be champions.”