Havant confident league crown will be secured

Stuart Ransley stepped it up against South Wilts. Picture: Neil Marshall
Stuart Ransley stepped it up against South Wilts. Picture: Neil Marshall
Chris Stone. Picture Ian Hargreaves (160975-1)

Key clash in Havant’s quest for double double

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BEN WALKER is backing Havant to retain the Southern League premier division crown by winning their final game at Lymington.

The defending champions will start the day with a slender lead over South Wilts at the top but know they can still be pipped at the post.

Skipper Walker, however, is backing his side to complete the job in the New Forest.

‘One more win will get us the title again,’ said Walker.

‘I have every confidence we can go out and get the job done.

‘At the same time we know that it won’t be easy against a quality Lymington outfit.

‘Lymington have probably been at the top of the league this summer for longer than we have.

‘We just have to go out and put in another good performance.

‘They will also be wanting to put in a good performance after collapsing against Burridge in their last game.

‘So we will go there knowing that nothing is a foregone conclusion.

‘Over the years Lymington have turned us over a few times at their place.

‘We have also had some good wins there so going to them won’t be an issue.

‘The key to it will be us working hard and putting in another good shift.’

Havant showed their quality in their seven-wicket win over main challengers South Wilts in their last game.

Walker’s team chased down a target of nearly 200 with Stuart Ransley producing a match-winning unbeaten century.

The ability of any number of Havant players to produce an outstanding performance in games has been a vital factor in their success.

‘We always seem to have someone in the team who puts their hand up to play their part,’ said Walker.

‘It isn’t always the same one or two individuals. Whoever does it the rest of the team enjoy their success.’

Havant have had to show a lot of character after making a slow start to the season but they have really stepped up their game since then.

Now it is a case of showing their stamina to hold on at the finish.

Walker recognises there is a determination in the team to claim another title.

‘Even though some of the players have won it lots of times before it still means a lot to them,’ said Walker.

‘It is still a great achievement to come out on top after 18 league games against some tough opponents.

‘For us it will be very special to achieve it.’

Even more remarkably Havant are still on course for a league and knock-out double for a second successive season.

On September 10 they will meet Alton in the final of the T20 knock-out at the Ageas Bowl and will aim to get the trophy.

Havant: Ransley, Gorvin, Walker, Stone, Gibson, Hindley, Bulled, Morgan, Prentice, Matthews, Jerry