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Lakenheath captain Shane Leach only has eyes for wins in survival bid

Lakenheath captain Shane Leech is only concerned about winning games in their bid to avoid dropping out of Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship Division One.

It has been a tough first season back in the Two Counties’ top division for Lakenheath, who won promotion as Division Two champions last year.

The Eriswell Road-based outfit have won just two of their 15 games so far, and occupy the second and last place in the relegation zone.

Cricket Lakenheath v Wivenhoe Chris Baugh Picture by Mark Westley. (14455319)
Cricket Lakenheath v Wivenhoe Chris Baugh Picture by Mark Westley. (14455319)

Last weekend’s trip to bottom side Ipswich fell foul of the weather, but the 11 points gained from the abandoned fixture did see Lakenheath close the gap on safety to seven points.

This Saturday could prove to be a crucial moment in Lakenheath’s battle to avoid an immediate return to Division Two, they host Halstead, the team directly above them in the table, at Eriswell Road (1pm).

And while skipper Leech was pleased to see his side close the gap on Halstead ahead of their meeting this weekend, he insists his sole focus is on winning games in order to climb out of the bottom two.

“I’ve got no interest in picking up two or three points here and there, I want to win games of cricket,” Leech said. “I’m sure Halstead are no different. They’re going to win games between now and the end of the season, and that’s what we need to do.

“A few people mentioned after the game on Saturday that we were in a better position than what we were at the start of the day, but there’s going to be more swings and roundabouts to come.”

Saturday’s encounter between Division One’s bottom two sides was finely poised before being abandoned, with Chris Baugh (89) and Dom Palmer (55) putting on 112 runs for the opening wicket, which helped Lakenheath to 194-6.

Ipswich openers Joe Rusby (25 no) and Damien Smith (43 no) took the hosts to 76-0 after 16 overs, at which point the weather intervened.

“It is what it is,” Leech said. “We were hopeful at tea, then we dropped a few chances, and the game was in the balance.

“We’ve had three games called off now, two of them against Ipswich who, no disrespect, we’d expect to beat more times than not.”

Last night, Lakenheath were due to face Stow in the final of the Mundford Cup T20 competition.

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