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Brandon remain confident
12:10am Saturday 23rd July 2011 in News
Despite suffering more than most at the hands of the weather in the last couple of weeks, leaders Brandon remain upbeat as they prepare for the most important six games in their history.
After two complete washouts, Brandon's 39-point lead of a fortnight ago was whittled down to 29, and Esh Winning have a game in hand, due to be played in late August.
But Brandon, who have never won the title, remain confident, and so they should given the strength of their squad.
In the current league averages they have a number of players featuring prominently, with Aussie Will Bosisto topping the professional batting rankings with 534 runs at an average of 76.3, and Scott Nattrass' 22 wickets at 14.5 placing him second in the amateur bowling.
But the jewel in the crown is Karl Turner, who has 511 runs at 64 per knock and 23 wickets at 17.8 each, a tremendous all-round effort that has propelled Brandon to new heights.
His four-week trial with Nottinghamshire could not be going much better either - he hit 185 last week for the second team and followed up with a century this week.
Brandon have a home game against Crook this afternoon, their only doubt being Dean Crampton, who was facing a late fitness test on his tweaked hamstring.
Town will be unchanged for a game they must win if they are to retain even a minimal interest in the title stakes.
The recent publication of averages showed Tudhoe's Simon Davies, at the top of the batting ranks with 763 runs at 84.78, although that does include the little matter of 328 in one go.
He will not be able to add to that today as Tudhoe have a day off.
Esh Winning will be missing Paul Chivers as they try to maintain pressure on Brandon by winning their home game against unchanged Marsden, Shildon tackle Evenwood and Ushaw Moor travel to play an unchanged Willington side that includes Neil Pratt, who is second to Bosisto in the pro batting ranks with 485 runs at 60.6.
Mainsforth select Mark Snowdon in place of Shaun Poulter for the trip to Langley Park, where captain Jamie Winn, along with Anthony Brown, is unavailable.
With Chris Winn having transferred to Sacriston, Park hand an opportunity to county under-14 player Jack Forsyth while Keith Smith captains.