The Club learned at the end of the 2004 season that, after two seasons at the helm, Lancastrian Ian Austin had decided to leave to become Director of Cricket at St. Annes in the Northern Premier League, and it was another Lancashire county cricketer who took his place; but this was a Yorkshireman in the guise of John Wood, the former Durham and Lancashire fast bowler. Born in Crofton, near Wakefield on 22nd July 1970, Wood had made his debut for Durham at the age of 21, but had left to join Lancashire in 2001 where he played until 2004 before being released. By this time, with both county clubs, he had a tally of 495 wickets in all competitions to his name. Whilst playing with both Durham and Lancashire he had turned out for Spen Victoria when available, and due to his connections brought along to Cleckheaton both his brother Ian and Kez Ahmed from the Spen Club.
Overseas man Faisal Irfan, after three years with the club, had decided to join fellow Bradford League side Pudsey St Lawrence, but we had gained an able replacement with an experienced Indian off-spinner and middle order batsman by the name of Faisal Shaikh. Shaikh had played on a regular basis with Bombay in the West Zone of India, but had been playing with Goa when we signed him. He was an exceptional off spinner who was to perform admirably throughout the season. Wicketkeeper Anthony Daniels, called up by the Yorkshire Academy was replaced by Richard Soulsby from Morley, who was the previous season's leading 2nd Division keeper. Excepting John Cairns, who like Austin had returned to Lancashire League cricket, the rest of the 2004 team was still in place. A good season was in prospect which is what it turned out to be.
In the cups, we enjoyed mixed fortunes. The club, having re-entered the Heavy Woollen Cup, fought their way to the semi-final before falling to eventual winners Barnsley, whilst after having the luxury of a bye in the first round of the Priestley Cup we were surprisingly knocked out by 2nd Division opponents Manningham Mills.
On the league front steady progress was made throughout the season with some encouraging scalps being taken along the way. We came out on top with both our matches against Pudsey St Lawrence, and after our first game against Pudsey Congs was rained off, in the return fixture we took four points from them after reducing them to 57 for 7 at Tofts Road. Only East Bierley who took 12 points from us, and Saltaire who gained 10, got the better of us over two games. We were in touch with the leaders for most of the campaign, and it showed the extent of the Club's current ambitions that, at the end of the season, a fifth place in the league was considered a little disappointing.
Andrew Gale having his best Bradford League season yet, scoring 1107 runs at an average of 52.71 per innings, but only he, skipper John Wood, and Adam Patel appeared in the list of batting averages. The runs scored by Andrew won him the "Tebro Trophy" for the most runs scored during the season by either 1st or 2nd division players. Two of our bowlers, John Wood (44 wickets at 15.48) and Faisal Shaikh (52 wickets at 16.02) were in the top seven of the bowling averages, and young Richard Soulsby finished second in the wicket keeping list with 31 victims.