Bexhill keen to make a statement
Bexhill Cricket Club is looking to make something of a statement against title-chasing opposition.
Buoyed by back-to-back wins over Sussex Premier League new boys Billingshurst and Middleton, in-form Bexhill will host perennial high-flyers Preston Nomads today (Saturday). Play is due to get under way from 12.30pm at The Polegrove.
Bexhill captain Johnathan Haffenden said: “You have to play with no fear against these sides and we have to prove what we can do. It’s alright doing it against the lower teams, but if we can make a statement here, it just sends out a message for the rest of the season.”
Last year’s runners-up Nomads have won the title for five of the last seven seasons and have won three of their opening four games this term.
Bexhill are in pretty good shape themselves, though, having scored more than 200 with the bat in each of their last three matches and picked up 34 wickets so far in 2015.
“Obviously they’re a good side,” continued Haffenden. “Maybe they rely on one bowler a little bit, but they bat all the way down.
“We’ve just got to not try and over-think this; not worry about them and do our own thing. They’re probably not going to be as worried about us, but that could be dangerous. If we perform, we’ll put them under pressure. We play The Polegrove really well and we’re looking to win it.”
Bexhill are seventh in the 10-team division at present and Haffenden is content with their points return so far.
“I probably would’ve taken 78 points at the start with the fixtures we had,” he added. “It’s a good start, we’re sitting just behind Eastbourne and we’ve got a game in hand on a few of the teams.
“We seem to have learnt very quickly this year. As a side we seem a bit stronger and there’s no reason why we can’t keep moving forward.
“It’s a good place to be. We seem to be improving every week and everyone’s confident.”
Bexhill are likely to make one change from the side which beat Middleton last weekend as Callum Guest is unavailable.
Guest is expected to return, however, for the Gray-Nicolls Sussex T20 Cup second round clash away to Eastbourne tomorrow, 1pm start. Tim Hambridge will miss that match through work.
THIS WEEKEND’S CRICKET FIXTURES - SATURDAY
Sussex Cricket League, 1st XI Premier Division (12.30): Bexhill v Preston Nomads.
1st XI Division 2 (1): Crowhurst Park v Pagham; Hastings Priory v St James’s Montefiore.
1st XI Division 4 (1): Slinfold v Rye.
2nd XI Division 1 (1): Preston Nomads v Bexhill; Roffey v Hastings Priory.
2nd XI Division 3 (East) (1): Glynde & Beddingham v Crowhurst Park; Rye v Haywards Heath.
East Sussex Cricket League (1.30), Division 1: Newick v Battle.
Division 2: Robertsbridge v Iden.
Division 3: Little Common Ramblers v East Dean & Friston.
Division 4: Bexhill III v Dicker.
Division 5: Pett v Plumpton & East Chiltington II.
Division 6: Udimore v Hastings Priory III; Wadhurst v Robertsbridge II.
Division 7: Battle II v Rottingdean III; Iden II v Alfriston; Linden Park IV v Bexhill IV.
Division 8: Burwash Weald v Newick III.
Division 9: Crowhurst Park III v Buxted Park III; Sidley v Herstmonceux II.
Division 10: Bexhill V v Wadhurst II; Denton II v Westfield; Robertsbridge III v Mayfield IV.
Division 11: Rye III v Pett II.
Division 12: Hastings Priory IV v Crowhurst Park IV.
Gray-Nicolls Sussex T20 Cup, 2nd round (1): Eastbourne v Bexhill.
Davidstow Village Cup, 3rd round (1): Mayfield v Crowhurst Park.
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