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Relegated threatened Rangers feeling no pressure

Southampton Rangers skipper Dion Stovell is adamant there isn’t any pressure on his side to win their derby match against PHC tomorrow in order to maintain their top-flight status.

Much has changed in 12 months for the Horseshoe Bay club who were crowned 50-over league champions last year, and are now in the middle of a relegation dogfight with St George’s heading into the final weekend.

Currently ahead of their eastern rivals by a solitary point, Rangers need a win against a foe that will be looking to take their rivals down into the First Division with them.

Rangers thrashed PHC in their first match at Southampton Oval by 201 runs.

“It’s a derby game and we know they have pretty much gone down and will look to take us with them, so we play our game and let that do the talking for us,” said Stovell. “Whether we go down or stay up, it’s cricket and you have to accept what the game brings you, but we are looking to get the win and stay up.

“If we play our game and win we don’t have to look at what St George’s do because we are ahead of them and they would need bonus points to catch us, so we just need to focus on our cricket.

“If we do go down it’s what we deserve, although we haven’t played that badly this year.”

The season has been bittersweet for the champions who started the season off sluggishly, losing back-to-back games against title rivals St David’s.

While their season spluttered early on, Stovell was encouraged to see Rangers refocus and make a sustained run at getting out of the relegation zone and towards the Belco Cup spots.

Admitting that veteran Dwayne Leverock has been instrumental since returning to the side, he also pointed to the fortunes of other clubs who have pulled off unlikely results while his side faltered.

“We started out slow, which put us behind everyone else but at the same time I feel hard done by because we played St David’s in back-to-back weeks and that wouldn’t happen anywhere else.

“We picked up wins late in the year and it was good to see Sluggo come out and help us in a time of need. Our team was always changing and only lately have we stuck to a side that’s consistent week in and week out.

“There have been some things that didn’t go our way in terms of decisions and our displays as well as the fortunes of other sides that you wouldn’t normally see, like Bailey’s Bay needing to bowl out Willow Cuts when they need one run to win. These things haven’t happened to us and we are still in a position to stay up so that’s the main goal right now.”

St George’s need to beat league leaders St David’s and get bonus points if they are to stay up and for PHC to beat Rangers.

Tomorrow’s other match will see Bailey’s Bay welcome Willow Cuts at Sea Breeze Oval hoping to overhaul their eastern rivals at the top of the charts.

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Published September 17, 2011 at 2:00 am (Updated September 17, 2011 at 8:29 am)

Relegated threatened Rangers feeling no pressure

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