CRICKET: Menai Bridge remain upbeat despite first home loss in two years

Reporter:

Tomos Hughes

DESPITE falling to their home defeat in almost two years last weekend, Menai Bridge skipper Robbie Jones remains confident his side can retain their North Wales Premier Division crown. 

For the first time since August 2013, Menai found themselves on the losing side on home soil as they slumped to a 42-run defeat against St Asaph last Saturday. 

Notwithstanding the blip, the Anglesey side still find themselves 15 points ahead of second-placed Brymbo, who also hold a game in hand over their rivals. 

With Menai travelling to third-placed Mochdre on Saturday, Jones is seeking a reaction from his title-chasing side. 

He said: ”We haven’t batted very well at all generally, I can’t put my finger on why, but that’s just cricket - it happens. 

“I’m confident we’ll get back into, hopefully starting on Saturday at Mochdre. 

“It’s our goal to retain the title and we’ve certainly got the players to do it, it’s just putting it into practice. We’ll be alright, hopefully.” 

Having opted to bat first last weekend, Asaph got off to a flyer with Gareth Jones making 37, before Will Ryan added 27. 

After hitting 14 fours, opener Mathew Ryan was eventually run out by Luke Jones for an outstanding 88, propelling Asaph to 210-8 from their 50 overs. 

Dion Holden bagged two wickets, while Dean Harbour, Robbie Jones and Ashley Wood claimed one each. 

Luke Jones (10) was first to go in Menai’s response, before Asaph struck a double blow with the quick removals of Dion Holden (0) and Gethin Roberts (3). 

Matt Bixby steadied Bridge with a patient 35, before captain Jones was removed for just one run. 

The ruthless Asaph attack had taken the sting out of the Menai innings, and although Chris Moore (21) and Andy Skeoch (27) added some much needed runs late on, Bridge were eventually skittled for 168 after 42.2 overs. 

Menai thirds travel to Pontblyddyn this Sunday having claimed a six-wicket win over at Abergele thirds last weekend, where Mohammad Islam took a six-wicket haul. 

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