Upminster aware of massive challenge Monty will provide, insists Curtis

PUBLISHED: 14:30 19 July 2019 | UPDATED: 15:33 19 July 2019

Shenfield's Monty Panesar (right) alongside captain Roy Smith at Upminster (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

Shenfield's Monty Panesar (right) alongside captain Roy Smith at Upminster (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

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Ollie Peck's team lost at home to Woodford Wells last weekend and take on Roy Smith's Shenfield next

John Curtis admits Upminster tend to perform better against the so-called stronger sides and is hopeful that will continue on Saturday away to Shenfield.

Ollie Peck's team are eighth in the table, but two of their three wins this season have been against the current top-two.

It means ahead of travelling to Roy Smith's Shenfield, Upminster will have no fear despite an eight-wicket loss to them in May.

Curtis said: "It doesn't seem to matter where they are in the league. We seem to play better against the better teams and hopefully we turn up on Saturday.

"We didn't play well against Shenfield earlier in the season, so we could do with a decent performance against them this time around."

Although this weekend's hosts' have slipped to fifth in the table, they are very much in the race for promotion and have a star bowler in their ranks.

Monty Panesar had Upminster in a spin on May 18 on his way to 5-39, but has found wickets harder to come by since the format went from all-day cricket to 50-over ties.

"Obviously it will be a massive challenge and he doesn't seem to go for many runs ever," Curtis added.

"The scorecards I've seen over the last few weeks, teams almost seem happy to knock him around for sometimes as low as two an over just to make sure he doesn't bowl you out.

"Looking at his recent figures, that is what it seems like because since the 50-over stuff started I don't think he has gone for more than 30."

If Upminster are to win again on Saturday, they will need to play smartly against Panesar and also bowl well themselves.

Last weekend, Woodford Wells defeated them by 97 runs after an entertaining clash at Monkhams Lane with the hosts all out for 287.

Peck picked up 3-43 while Nicky Ison (2-38) and James Aggio-Brewe (2-42) nabbed braces, but in reply Upminster's top score was 36 by Nabeel Aziz.

Curtis said: "We had lots of starts, but no one really went on. We spoke about keeping wickets in hand and it never really happened.

"There were some loose shots and everyone was guilty of getting themselves out rather than the bowler getting them out.

"Our outfield is ridiculous at the moment, it's so quick over there and anything past the fielder is four, but we were hitting shots up in the air and it was a bit unnecessary.

"After such a great win against Colchester the weekend before it was a shame, but that seems to be the story of our season. We seem to be great one Saturday and not so great the game after."

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