BOARS captain Mark Evenson says that his Bromsgrove side will take plenty of confidence from their 38-run victory over Tamworth, when hosting Wolverhampton on Saturday (noon).
Bromsgrove successfully defended their 160 total by dismissing hosts Tamworth for just 122 runs in the 45th over, providing the Boars with their first maximum-points victory of the campaign in Birmingham & District Premier Division Two.
Evenson now looks forward to another big game against fourth-placed Wolverhampton, and believes it will be another close game.
“It was a great game at their place,” he said.
“We’re taking confidence from the last game going into it, but if we can have someone bat a big total like Jayden (Levitt) did at their place, then that always helps.
“We like playing in Bromsgrove, so I’m expecting it to be another close match.”
He confirms that the team will remain the same for this weekend’s fixture, in a bid to keep consistency, and says that the Boars can start looking towards the top half of the table with a win this weekend.
In last Saturday’s trip to Tamworth, Bromsgrove elected to bat first but lost Jayden Levitt (9) early on at 19-1, while Alistair Hickman (18) also lasted a short spell before his dismissal for the second wicket.
A stand of 87 between Alex Milton (33) and Ashley Newfield (72) was crucial, and helped establish a score for Bromsgrove to build on.
Unfortunately for the Boars, the middle-to-late order were promptly dismissed, and with Newfield finally out from Scott Daly’s catch off a Josh Bowker (4-16) delivery in the eighth wicket, the visitors crashed to a 160 total.
In reply, Bromsgrove’s bowlers worked efficiently to take dismissals at regular intervals.
With no significant partnerships being allowed by the likes of Alex Wilkinson (4-28) and Gareth Williams (2-14), Tamworth slipped to 86-7.
Top scorer and opener Josh Rudge (35) remained stubborn throughout the 119 balls that he faced, but was finally bowled by Wilkinson in the ninth wicket to edge Bromsgrove closer to victory.
Wicketkeeper Milton then caught Tom Kinson behind from another Wilkinson delivery to dismiss the hosts for 122 and send Bromsgrove up to eighth in the table.
Evenson lauded his teammates for avoiding a potentially dire situation, and is delighted to have put some distance between themselves and the drop zone.
“It was a very crucial result,” said the Boars skipper.
“Tamworth have struggled for the last ten or 11 weeks, so to have conceded victory to them would have dragged us down towards the bottom.
“It was a helpful wicket for bowlers on Saturday, we gave them four bowling points but all that mattered was the victory.
“It extends the gap between us and Tamworth to over 50 points, and now we can start looking forward.”
He admits the game was in the balance as Tamworth began their innings, but was pleased to have seen out the result.
“It was one of those scores where it’s in the balance,” said Evenson.
“Another 20 or 30 runs would have helped us reach a par score if you like.
“Tamworth did well to come back, they gave a little bit of resistance from their opener, but other than that, it was fairly straightforward for us.”
One player who did miss out on the victory was Ryan Pedley, who played for the Seconds and helped bat an unbeaten score of 60 en route to victory over Lye.
The Boars captain says that Pedley is sure to return to the first XI after a spell with the Seconds, and is confident that the change can do his teammate the world of good.
“Hopefully he can come back to us with more confidence,” said Evenson.
“Ryan’s a good player and I have no doubt that we’ll need him at some point in the season.”