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Harold Wood keen to bounce back as they attempt to take promotion hunt to the wire

PUBLISHED: 09:00 16 August 2019

H Ikram of Harold Wood during Gidea Park and Romford CC vs Harold Wood CC, Shepherd Neame Essex League Cricket at Gidea Park Sports Ground on 6th July 2019

H Ikram of Harold Wood during Gidea Park and Romford CC vs Harold Wood CC, Shepherd Neame Essex League Cricket at Gidea Park Sports Ground on 6th July 2019

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Harold Wood will look to bounce back to winning ways to keep themselves in the promotion race in Shepherd Neame Essex League Division One this weekend.

Captain Craig Perrin and his side make the short trip to Upminster on Saturday to take on local rivals as they look for a strong end to the campaign.

They currently sit fourth in the league table, but are just 18 points off the top two places as they still hope to earn promotion into the Premier Division.

And they only have four fixtures against lowly Loughton, Southend-on-Sea and Romford & Gidea Park left to play after the Upminster clash to determine their destiny.

"We're still very much in with a shout, the frustration for us is that in the last three games we could have stamped our authority and settled the argument early, but we've made life a little bit more difficult for ourselves," admitted Perrin.

"We need to get back on the winning trail this weekend, but as I said to the boys if we win our four games then we'll be in the top two, so it's all very much to play for. It's not all doom and gloom."

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The skipper not only wants to win for the sake of their league position, but also wants to get one back over their local rivals.

"It's a good opportunity for us to bounce back playing a local rival and having been defeated by them earlier in the season we certainly want to set the record straight," he added.

Perrin knows Wood must put in a better performance than last weekend after falling to an 84-run defeat against third-placed Woodford Wells who leapfrogged them in the table as a result.

Wells piled up 263-6 at Harold Wood, led by half-centuries from Joe Johnson (73) and captain Mitchell Todd (63), who put on 121 for the second wicket.

George Styles (40 not out) and Jack Stead (31) also made starts, as Mohammed Hasan (3-32) and Sadair Mehdi (2-52) had most success with the ball for the home side.

Wood saw Hamzah Ikram (51) and Hafiz Yawar Afzal put on 69 in reply, but fall in quick succession without addition to the total.

Juwel Roy (31) was the only other batsman to make much impact, though, as Farzand Shah (4-30) and Deven Solanki (3-39) dovetailed to dismiss Wood for 179, with Taqi Abbas unable to bat.

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