Havant told to banish pain of double blow

Havant captain Ben Walker. Picture: Neil Marshall (170311-1)
Havant captain Ben Walker. Picture: Neil Marshall (170311-1)
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Reigning champions Havant have a point to prove as they entertain Southern League premier division leaders Lymington at Havant Park tomorrow (11am).

Ben Walker is urging his side to give it everything as they look to restore pride following heavy league and cup defeats last weekend.

First they suffered a 153-run loss at South Wilts and then 24 hours later they were knocked out of the National Club Championship by Surrey outfit Normandy.

Walker is insisting his side return to their own high standards.

‘Last weekend was dismal and it is a long time since we have lost twice in one weekend,’ said the skipper.

‘It doesn’t happen too often. We all play for and love the club but last weekend we didn’t do the club or ourselves justice.

‘The high standards that we pride ourselves on slipped a little.

‘At South Wilts we dropped a couple of catches and we were not as good as we needed to be.

‘When we batted, apart from Chris Stone – who was unlucky with his dismissal, it is hard to defend anyone.

‘It was just a huge off-day. In the cup we were well beaten by the better team on the day.

‘A win over Lymington will go a long way to banishing the events of last weekend from our minds.’

Havant are boosted by the return of Hampshire’s Brad Taylor – fresh from his County Championship appearance against Lancashire.

Taylor’s presence in their ranks will increase the belief they can turn over the leaders.

In his last game – against Andover, the all-rounder scored 131 and took seven for 38.

Walker admits having someone of his quality in the side lifts everyone.

The only absentee is Rob Gibson, who is away on holiday.

‘With just one game this weekend, we have to go out and make sure we leave everything out on the pitch,’ said Walker.

‘We have got to give this one everything.

‘If we play in the same manner of last week then we will suffer another defeat.

‘This weekend we want to be the ones handing out the lessons.

‘It doesn’t get any easier because Lymington are a top side.

‘But we have to return to the standards we usually set ourselves nine times out of 10.

‘This game marks the halfway stage of the season.

‘We will have played all the other teams once.

‘At the moment we sit in mid-table which is not where we want to be.

‘There is still a lot of cricket to be played, including the t20 competition.

‘If we can go on a run and win a few games you never know where that might take us.’

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