ANDREW SWARBRICK has urged Chirk to make last week’s maximum points haul count with Premier Division safety in sight.
Chirk proved far too strong as they cruised to a 110-run home success over a depleted Hawarden Park to pocket 15 points, which moved them 20 clear of second from bottom Mochdre.
With three games remaining Chirk are closing in on survival, and captain Swarbrick wants to pocket another victory at Wrexham rivals Gresford.
“It couldn’t have come at a better time,” said Swarbrick with regards the win over Hawarden Park. “With Mochdre and Llanrwst both losing 15-0 we have put a little gap between us and the bottom two.
“We’ve got to make it count now against Gresford.”
Chirk make their way to Gresford tomorrow before a home clash with Llanrwst in eight days time and Swarbrick wants safety wrapped up as quickly as possible.
“I don’t know who Llanrwst and Mochdre are playing this weekend, but we couldn’t ask for a better run in,” said Swarbrick.
“To win 15-0 last week was massive ahead of games with Gresford, who are a place above us, and Llanrwst.
“Hopefully we can get a good win against Gresford and there is a chance to get ourselves safe.”
Swarbrick is “over the moon” to be back available for Chirk after injury, while Gareth Partridge will also feature, although Billy Swarbrick and Jonny Phillips are unavailable.
While Chirk are looking to build on their sizeable win last week, Hawarden Park, who were on the receiving end, are aiming to hit back by denting Bangor’s title hopes.
Captain Ian Martin is amongst the players returning for Hawarden as they look to move on from their disappointment at Chirk.
Martin said: “It would be great to beat Bangor and blow the title race wide open and I am confident we can if we play our best cricket.
“It was tough on the lads who played last week, we were under strength and it was not going to be easy against a Chirk side fighting for their lives.
“But we have players back for tomorrow and we are going to give our all to see if we can cause Bangor a few problems.”
Connah’s Quay will be hoping that lightning can strike twice as they look to put struggling Llanrwst to the sword tomorrow afternoon.
Quay plundered 482 for seven from 50 overs against St Asaph, who were on the wrong end of a Martin Burger masterclass as he struck 232 from 133 balls, including 26 fours and 12 sixes.
On Burger’s brilliance, captain Ryan Holloway said: “It was unbelievable really. Some of his hitting was crazy. It was a special knock.”
Without Burger, Quay managed to score an additional 250 and Holloway was proud of a real team performance.
“The whole team produced a special innings,” continued Holloway. “People like Tom Hooson (67) and Luke Bennett (45) were also really impressive.
“I said we’d get 400 in an innings this season and the team showed exactly what they could do.
“The pitch had green grass on it, but it was rock hard and the ball came on and we did what I knew we could.
“It was massively enjoyable and revenge for our 40 all out at their place earlier this season.”
Holloway was disappointed with one aspect, however, adding: “I was a bit disappointed not to get 500.”
Turning his attentions to the trip to Llanrwst, Holloway is looking forward to seeing what his team can do at Gwydyr Park.
“It is a game we should win and if we play well we will win,” declared Holloway, who is without Bennett tomorrow.
Brymbo have their sights set on climbing into the top five with a sizeable home victory over Llandudno.
The Wrexham-based outfit cruised to a 99-run success over Mochdre last weekend to move to within 14 points of fifth placed Llandudno.
And captain James Claybrook insists taking fifth spot from their visitors is the ideal motivation ahead of tomorrow.
“A big win for us tomorrow will take us past Llandudno and up to fifth so that is a big motivation,” said Claybrook. “It would be also nice to avenge the one-run loss earlier in the season and there's no reason why we can't potentially catch Denbigh and St Asaph ahead of us as well, so there is still plenty to play for.”
Brymbo made light work of Mochdre last weekend without key duo Conner Davies or Ben Roberts, while Dan Parry bagged 5-57 after a half century with the bat despite struggling with injury.
Claybrook continued: “It was another very comfortable win and it was pleasing to do so without Connor or Ben.
“We were a few bowlers short and a number of the lads were struggling with injuries so I was extremely thankful for Dan for his five wickets and his effort, especially considering he had an injured hip throughout the majority of his spell.”
Davies and Roberts return for Brymbo, who are without Dafydd Rhys, Jonny Lister and Alex Rollison.
Elsewhere, Menai Bridge can boost their title hopes with a big win over visiting Mochdre, who could be relegated if results go against them, while it’s third versus fourth as Denbigh visit St Asaph.
Division One: Abergele v Pontblyddyn; Bethesda v Carmel and District; Dolgellau v Conwy; Gwersyllt Park v Bersham; Northop v Pwllheli.
Division Two: Halkyn v Castell Alun; Llangollen v Buckley; Mynydd Isa v Marchwiel and Wrexham.
Second XI Premier Division: Buckley 2nds v Llanrwst 2nds; Carmel and District 2nds v Northop 2nds; Denbigh 2nds v Brymbo 2nds; Llandudno 2nds v Hawarden Park 2nds; Mochdre 2nds v Gresford 2nds; Pontblyddyn 2nds v Menai Bridge 2nds.
Second XI East Division: Chirk 2nds v Halkyn 2nds; Marchwiel and Wrexham 2nds v Mold 2nds.
Second XI West Division: Bangor 2nds v Caernarfon; Holyhead v Abergele 2nds; Pwllheli 2nds v Bethesda 2nds.
See full story in the Leader