Swardeston need two more wins to secure historic sixth EAPL title

Swardeston CC celebrate winning the 2014 EAPL title.

Swardeston CC celebrate winning the 2014 EAPL title. - Credit: Archant

A place in the history books awaits for Swardeston, as they attempt to wrap up their fourth consecutive East Anglian Premier League title today.

Winning at Norfolk neighbours Great Witchingham could secure the title for Swardeston, depending on how nearest rivals Frinton-on-Sea get on at Bury St Edmunds.

Victory is far from a foregone conclusion though, as the Witches have proved to be a bogey side in recent times, winning the last three matches between the teams.

Swardeston are also looking to shake off a late wobble after defeat at Bury was followed by a home loss to Vauxhall Mallards – allowing Frinton to close the gap to 10 points.

'It's been a long, hard season and we haven't played as well as we should have done,' captain Mark Thomas, inset, said.

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'But we've got such a good squad that each week I'm having to ring up a couple of people and disappoint them that they're not in the team.

'So it's now up to the guys who are selected to win these two games and then it won't have been a bad season at all.'

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If that title is secured, Swardeston would become the first club to win the EAPL title in four consecutive season and the first to win six EAPL titles – although they will have to do it without batsman Lewis Denmark, who has a leg injury.

'The funny thing is we've beaten Frinton quite easily twice this season,' Thomas added. 'So the league has been pretty good. You've just got to look at Bury, who were stone bottom, they've beaten a number of the top teams and have now pulled away from relegation. So it has been a reasonably strong league.'

The Witches go into the match in sixth place and without having tasted defeat since mid-July.

'I don't think we've played as well as we have done in the past. We've lost our last two and now we've got to win our last two but that's not going to be easy as Great Witchingham are playing quite well currently,' the Swardeston skipper continued.

'They've got their overseas player back, Brenton McDonald, whose a leg-spinner and a good player, so we need to put the last couple of defeats behind us and try to get the win.

'We've lost our last few games against them as well so we need to set that record straight. They've played quite cleverly against us and we've been a bit naive in those games.

'We need to try and bat against them more, occupy the crease, but they have played well against us in the past and have some good batsmen in Sam Arthurton and James Spelman.'

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