Wade Associates Northern Alliance

ONLY two of today's quarter-finalists in the Longhorn Hardware League Cup have been involved in previous finals and both Shankhouse and Walker Central will be hoping for repeat appearances this term.

ONLY two of today's quarter-finalists in the Longhorn Hardware League Cup have been involved in previous finals and both Shankhouse and Walker Central will be hoping for repeat appearances this term.

Shankhouse claimed the silverware in 2005 and were losing finalists in 2004 and 2007 while Walker Central were cup winners in 2001.

In the first meeting of the two clubs this season Walker entertain Blyth Town with a semi-final slot at stake and Shankhouse are at Gateshead taking on Rutherford, who are one of three First Division survivors at this stage in the League Cup.

In an all-Premier Division clash, Ashington Colliers are at home to Heddon, who were restricted to a goal-less draw in an earlier league meeting at Bullocksteads.

While league leaders Walker Central and second-placed Heddon are on League Cup duty there are opportunities for some of their rivals to reduce the points gap. Cumbrian neighbours Gillford Park and Harraby Catholic Club still have a lot to do and are about ten points off the pace at present.

Only beaten once in this campaign, Gillford will be challenged by in-form visitors Heaton Stannington, who have won two and drawn four of their last six games in the Premier Division.

Defending champions Harraby Catholic Club have a league double in their sights as they visit a struggling Newcastle University side which has just lost four games on the trot.

Northbank are unlikely to get much change out of visitors Seaton Delaval, who were 5-0 victors in the reverse fixture.

Meanwhile, Cramlington Town will aim to avenge their earlier 3-1 defeat by Ponteland United And Carlisle City, improving of late, should make home advantage count against notoriously poor travellers Peterlee Town.

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