SKIPPER Mark Evenson has warned Bromsgrove cannot afford any more slip ups if they want to challenge for promotion from Birmingham League Division One.
On their return to the 50-over format on Saturday, the Boars suffered a 63-run defeat, courtesy of the Duckworth Lewis system, to fellow promotion hopefuls Halesowen at St Godwalds Park.
Bromsgrove, in their favoured format, opted to bat after winning the toss but were limited to 177-9.
Ash Newfield top scored with 36 while opener Alec Baker chipped in 30 as the rest of Bromsgrove’s batsmen struggled against the accurate bowling from former Boars players Alexei Kervezee (2-20) and Charles Hartley (3-43).
In reply Halesowen got off to a flying start through Edward Kilbee (37) before the second-wicket partnership of Jamie Harris (75 not out) and Kester Moseley (27no) eased the visitors to victory when the rain fell in the 33rd over.
“Our performance was not good enough to merit finishing second in the league,” said a frustrated Evenson.
“In our favourite format we were hoping to bat really well but once again we did our usual losing wickets in clusters and we knew a score around 170 was well below par.
“That showed as Halesowen chased it down rather easily.
“Perhaps we put a bit too much pressure on ourselves before the game to win the match and although we are not far from the promotion spots, I don’t think we can afford to drop any more points in our remaining six games.”
The Boars sit 29 points adrift of second placed Shifnal going into Saturday’s away trip to Shropshire outfit Bridgnorth.
Warwickshire’s Alex Thomason is set to return but Evenson will be without Gareth Williams (holiday) and Alex Wilkinson.
George Marshall will be called up from the second string to deputise.
“It’s important we just get back to doing the basics,” said Evenson.
“We did those well in the 55-over format so we have got to stay positive.
“We seemed a little bit negative with our batting on Saturday so hopefully we can turn that around this weekend and try to come away with 20 points.”