Francis knows Gidea Park must avoid defeat at Hainault

PUBLISHED: 09:00 24 August 2018

Jamal Francis talks to an umpire (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Jamal Francis talks to an umpire (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

GPR lost by 174-runs at home to Buckhurst Hill last weekend

Gidea Park & Romford skipper Jamal Francis says it is imperative his side avoid defeat when they visit relegation rivals Hainault & Clayhall in the Shepherd Neame Essex League Division One on Saturday.

Park head into the weekend in eighth, but are just one place and four points clear of Hainault who are in the bottom two.

With just three games to go this term, a win for GPR on Saturday would do their survival hopes the power of good.

But regardless what result they achieve on Saturday, Francis says it is key Park remain above Hainault in the table.

“For us it’s a case of must not lose because when you’re out of the relegation zone, you want to keep the sides below you at arms’ length,” he said.

“We know we’re going to have keep thinking throughout the game on Saturday as situations can change.

“There could be times when Hainault look on course to get more points than us even if the game seems to be heading for a draw and we have to react to that.

“We have to do what we can to ensure we can get as many points as possible on Saturday and we have to play with maturity to do that.”

GPR will hope to given an improved display with the bat on Saturday after struggling in that area in a 174-run defeat at home to promotion hopefuls Buckhurst Hill last weekend.

After their visitors declared on 239-7, Park were dismissed for just 65 in a disastrous reply.

Their highest partnership was a 15-run stand for the ninth wicket between Harry Phillips (13) and Sam O’Sullivan (15).

And Francis believes the failure again to have any meaningful partnerships contributed to Park’s downfall against Hainault.

“We’ve struggled with partnerships for the most part of the season and it was no different against Buckhurst Hill,” admitted Francis.

“Buckhurst Hill showed us how to make partnerships and that’s something we can learn from going forward.

“Things like this happen with a young squad, but we have to learn from it.”

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