NORTHERN cricket chiefs are cautiously optimistic that they can get their season under way this weekend.
Four of the six NTCA venues have been given the go-ahead after last week's round-one washout, but the final say will again be made by the weather.
``We've got our fingers crossed and are keen to get going,'' Cricket Tasmania's Northern administrator David Fry said.
``We are anxiously awaiting the weather. There is up to 20 millimetres of rain forecast and that presents problems. We're hoping we don't get quite that much.
``Most of the grounds are looking pretty good and the wickets are being prepared so at this stage all matches are listed to go ahead.
``It really is going to depend on that rain because there is still a fair bit of moisture on the ground.''
The NTCA No.1 ground has been rolled and passed fit and is scheduled to host Launceston's match against Westbury followed by the state first-class women's matches next weekend.
Westbury and Riverside have declared their home grounds ready while Cricket North is waiting on a report from George Town.
Mowbray's Invermay Park remains unavailable as the tidy-up from the Launceston Show continues and is unlikely to be used until at least November 2 so the Eagles' match against reigning champion South has been switched to NTCA No.2.
South's regular home was the only ground available to the competition last Saturday when the league took the decision to declare all matches drawn.
Fry said other local competitions including the TCL were also being plagued by weather problems making rolling and mowing difficult.
SATURDAY'S 1ST GRADE MATCHES (all 10.30am start)
Mowbray v South Launceston: NTCA No 2
George Town v Riverside: Crothers Oval
Launceston v Westbury Shamrocks: NTCA No 1