Hambledon skipper eyes crucial change of fortune

Hambledon skipper Will Bond
Hambledon skipper Will Bond
Martin Lee. Picture: Mick Young

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Will Bond is on a mission to prevent Hambledon falling through the Southern League division two trapdoor.

They travel to South Wilts II tomorrow – aiming to haul themselves off the bottom of the table at the expense of their hosts.

With another key relegation battle against Langley Manor the following week, Bond knows it is going to be a huge fortnight for his team.

With just one win to their name so far, time is running out for the Dons to turn their fortunes around.

‘The next two weeks are massive,’ said Bond.

‘We have to go out and play to the best of our abilities and not allow the pressure to get to us.

‘The fact is we have been competitive in almost all our games.

‘We have not been skittled out by anyone and not conceded big scores.

‘It is vital we find a winning mentality in the second half of the season.

‘Once we get a win or two, I am certain more will follow.’

Bond was pleased with his side’s effort in their defeat at Totton & Eling last weekend – recognising they were up against the division’s top team.

He felt their all-round performance was positive, although they failed to score enough runs against a very good bowling attack.

Bond (76) returned to the top of the order following a shoulder injury.

‘It felt good to get back to my usual position and renew the partnership with George Marshall,’ said Bond.

‘We generally bat well together. To get my runs against a strong Totton bowling attack was pleasing.

‘The week before I had been run out at the bowler’s end which was unfortunate.’

Marshall and Indy Chakrabarti have been Hambledon’s top runscorers so far this term but Bond may be without both this weekend.

The former is away, while the skipper is waiting on the fitness of Chakrabarti, who has a side strain.

‘It has been that kind of year for injuries,’ added Bond.

The Dons skipper is also hoping his bowlers will have a change of fortune – particularly their overseas recruit Sib Khan.

The Australian medium-fast bowler has not enjoyed the best of times since arriving from Sydney.

‘Sib has bowled nicely without a lot of luck,’ said Bond.

‘He is getting more used to the English conditions, though, and it is only a matter of time before he takes off.’

Bond believes it is important the Dons maintain their division two status.

‘We are an established club in this league and have been higher in the past,’ added the captain.

Keeping Hambledon up is Bond’s priority and he is hoping it doesn’t prove to be mission impossible.

Hambledon: Bond, Chakrabarti, Le Clercq S, Glanfield H, 
Khan, Chapman O, Chapman R, Le Clercq L, Shinn, Harding, Glanfield C