The stakes are high for Waterlooville as they visit struggling Bedhampton Mariners for a division one derby at Bidbury Mead.
Ville narrowly missed out on promotion on the final day of last season and are determined to go one better this time around.
Last week’s disappointing defeat against Compton & Chandlers Ford was a big setback and Ville know another defeat would do further damage to their ambitions.
‘This is a massive game for us,’ said Ville vice-captain Jon Hudson.
‘We lost poorly last week and it was a big culture shock for us because we are used to winning.
‘After what happened last season, it was vital we made a good start and we didn’t bank on losing against a team who hadn’t won before this season.
‘We were all extremely disappointed and are determined to bounce back straight away.
‘An extra training session has been held where we sat down and analysed where things went wrong.
‘It is back to the drawing board for us because we were poor in all areas.
‘Our middle-order batting needs to be stronger and we must start bowling in the right areas.
‘We can’t afford to lose again but Bedhampton represent a potential banana skin for us.
‘They are yet to win and that will make them only more dangerous.
‘They have players who can win games and I am sure they can turn their season around.
‘We just have to make sure they don’t start against us.’
Ville have brought in extra experience in the shape of 50-year-old off-spinner Martin Sheppard.
And they also have all-rounder Paul Russell returning in place of Namish Verma.
‘Hopefully, the other players will feed off the experience of the players coming in and produce the goods themselves,’ said Hudson.
Hosts Bedhampton will be hoping to make it third time lucky in a derby this summer, having already lost against Purbrook and Locks Heath.
Despite losing their opening three matches, Bedhampton captain Stuart Gardner has taken lots of positives from his side’s performances.
‘When we are able to put out our full-strength side, we can be a match for most teams in this league,’ said the Mariners’ skipper.
Bedhampton: Dan Clark, Ben De Jong, Brad Mengham, Martin Hovey, Stewart Gardiner, Micky Harding, Sam Woodgate, Ed Wilkes, Alex Gardiner, David McFawn, Jack Young
Waterlooville: Chris Baumann, Alex Sheppard, Matt Charman, Jon Hudson, Andy Reynolds, Max Goddard, Paul Russell, John Burnett, Nathan White, Lloyd Williams, Martin Sheppard