Johnathan Haffenden sees no reason why Bexhill Cricket Club can’t continue its winning start against perennial title challengers Preston Nomads.
Bexhill will be aiming to make it three straight Sussex Premier League wins today (Saturday) when they travel to a Nomads side which has won the league six times in the last 10 years.
“We’ve got no reason to fear them,” said Bexhill captain Haffenden. “Sometimes we’ve been a little bit negative against them. They’ve got a couple of big names, but we’ve got to realise they’re just names.
“We’re on a level playing field with them, and we want to win it and put out a statement that ‘this is us’. We just need to keep concentrating on what we’re doing and do it well.
“They’re a good side and obviously their ambitions are always to win the league. They’ve bullied sides over the years and had the reputation of being a tough side to beat.
“They’ve got a decent overseas and they bat all the way down so it’s pretty relentless bowling against them, but if we do what we’ve done the last week we’ll come out as winners.”
Bexhill are setting the early pace in the league having picked up the full house of 60 points from their opening two league matches. Reigning champions Roffey are level on points with Bexhill having also won both their games, but every other team has already tasted defeat at least once.
Haffenden said: “That massively disappointing first weekend (Bexhill suffered two cup defeats in as many days a week prior to the start of the league campaign) has put us in good stead because we’ve come out and put everything right, and set some good standards.
“We’ve talked about what we would like to do, but we’ll just take each game as it comes. We’re very young and we’ve had to learn the hard way over the last few years, and learn quite quickly. Hopefully a lot of those lessons have been learned and we’re starting to put it all right now.
“The spirit’s brilliant at the moment. We’ve trained well all winter and everything just seems to be going well.”
Bexhill have scored 490 league runs and taken 20 wickets so far having won by 97 runs away to Billingshurst a fortnight ago and 47 runs at home to East Grinstead last weekend, when overseas player Aidan Brooker took five wickets on his debut.
“He bowls very good areas with good shape and did everything right,” added Haffenden, of the club’s new South African import. “Him and Shawn (Johnson) up top are going to be a pretty good partnership.”
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