MAIDENHEAD & Bray captain Louis Blackwell has put their poor start to the season down to a lack of availability.

The club have won just once in six matches and their latest loss, a 68-run defeat at Kidmore End on Saturday, leaves them in the two relegation spots in Thames Valley Division 2A.

Explaining the situation at the Bray Ground, Blackwell told the Observer: “We’re missing one or two and availability tends to be in and out. We’re having to rely on second team players at the minute.

“We need to get more consistency with our team. Hopefully we can start to field stronger sides and be more competitive in these games.

“The guys need to work hard in training and availability needs to be better so we’re not relying on one or two. If we can do that, then we will be able to compete in this league.”

Kidmore were put into bat first on Saturday and took advantage to reach 246-5 after 52 overs with Guy Ashby (92*), Jake Easton (49) and Tom Sheldon (31) top scoring.

Henry Grover was the pick of the Maidenhead bowlers with his figures of 3-47 while wickets also fell to Jawad Murtaza (1-49) and Blackwell (1-69).

The visitors managed 178 all out in 40.3 overs in response despite 73 from Will Cunliffe at the top of the order. Faizal Aziz added 20 and Charles Rodger 19.

Royal Borough Observer:

PHOTO: Jawad Murtaza bowls for Maidenhead & Bray in the defeat to Kidmore End.

James Frost led the Kidmore bowling attack with an impressive six-wicket haul (6-28), backed up by Ashby (3-36) and Jeff Sheldon (1-30).

“For their ground, which has got quite a good batting deck, I wasn’t too disappointed with our bowling,” commented Blackwell.

“We started quite well with the bat and at one stage were 137-2, which is a nice position, but we’re missing batsman in the middle order to push us over the line.

“Kidmore bowled really well and we folded a little bit after we lost a couple of wickets.

“Kidmore are a good side, but we played a lot better than the week before.

“The guys enjoyed it a lot more which is important.”

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