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Party atmosphere at champions elect Purton
PURTON will be crowed champions of the Wiltshire League should they accrue just five bonus points from their game with Beanacre on Saturday, and the club intend to celebrate accordingly.
Even a comprehensive defeat at home would more than likely see the table-toppers promoted, seeing as they hold a 45-point lead over Wootton Bassett in second, and with the club’s second string not in action a celebration day is planned this weekend.
A barbecue, music and party atmosphere is expected at Purton Cricket Ground from around 5pm, and skipper Elliot Hill wants his players to make sure they are not put off by the frivolity around the boundary.
“It should be a good day as long as we get the four or five points we need,” he said.
“We have to keep focused and make sure we get them. It’s not quite done but it pretty much is.
“It’s important we don’t get distracted by however many people turn up or whatever is going on at the ground. We’ll go through the same warm-up routines as we’ve been doing every week - I’ll be playing garden cricket as usual on Friday night.
“It’s important that the squad maintains its focus on the game rather than what’s going on around us outside the boundary. It’ll be interesting to see how the players react. If the club progresses as it hopes to in the short to medium term then you are going to get more people watching you play cricket.”
Imran Ashraf continues to be unavailable for Hill, while wicketkeeper Mark Gardner is a doubt.
Meanwhile, in WEPL Premier Two, Goatacre captain Brad Dawson has conceded promotion is practically out of reach - but he and his teammates are fully focused on securing third spot for the second year running.
Having been second-bottom just before the season’s halfway mark, Goatacre have not lost since the turn and currently sit fourth, 15 points behind third-placed Thornbury, ahead of the visit of Glastonbury.
Dawson said: “It would be nice to get second but third is probably realistic now. Taunton and Thornbury would have to lose both so third would be good.
“The second half of the season has shown what we can do.”
Goatacre are missing Craig Gibbens and Sam Parish, while Connor Rafferty drops out of the side. Dan Ellis and Toby Horton are promoted.
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