Upminster Cricket Club captain Alan Ison wants promotion and the Essex League Division One title!

PUBLISHED: 17:00 29 July 2016

Upminster celebrate getting a wicket (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Upminster celebrate getting a wicket (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

Young team bounced back from defeat at Hadleigh on July 16 to earn impressive victory at promotion rivals Southend last weekend

Upminster extended their lead at the top of Essex League Division One to 46 points on Saturday and captain Alan Ison has now challenged his squad to win the title.

After losing at Hadleigh on July 16, the league leaders bounced back with a 55 run success over Southend last weekend after dismissing the away team for just 126.

It has increased the confidence in the camp ahead of visiting Harold Wood tomorrow (Saturday) – another clash that might be tight.

With a large lead at the top of the standings, Upminster could afford to slip up once in their remaining six fixtures, but Ison doesn’t want that.

He said: “There is a few games still to go and cricket can be a funny, old game at times. Even if we do get promoted over the next few weeks, we still need to turn up and try to win every match.

“I want to win the league now so I’ll be doing all I can for us to win every game we play. We want to be champions by as big a margin as possible so we will still be trying to come out on top in every fixture.”

At the start of the campaign, Ison hoped he could lead Upminster to a strong finish in his maiden season as skipper and improve after they beat the drop in 2015.

It has been a wonderful campaign so far, but local rivals Harold Wood will be determined to halt the title challengers momentum.

“Everyone is positive and we have been like that all year really because we’ve been playing well,” said Ison.

“This season has gone better than I expected, but Harold Wood have been in decent form lately. I know they lost to Fives & Heronians last weekend, but they have some good players.

“It will be a tough game, I’m sure they’ll come out all guns blazing on Saturday. Raihan Hussain has scored a lot of runs for them.

“Richard Brabner, their captain, was missing at Fives so I expect him to be back so it will be difficult for us, but we have a full strength team out and it should be a good contest.”

Julian Whetstone top scored for Upminster last weekend with 48 as they were all out for 181 with Matt Tigg hitting a vital 34 and James Aggio-Brewe adding 22.

John Curtis claimed 3-14 with the ball to help dismiss title rivals Southend for just 126.

Ison added: “We didn’t get off to the best of starts falling to 18-3, Ashleigh McCafferty bowled a couple of really good balls to get rid of Shahbaz Butt and me.

“It was a good knock by Julian and Harry Jenkins stuck around with him for quite a while before Matt and James put on a decent partnership. 181 was ok in the end, the wicket was dry and we had four spinners so I thought we could defend it.”

And Upminster managed to do so to move clear of their rivals in Division One.

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