WITH the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship division two title increasingly in their sights, Braintree Cricket Club captain Louis Cant insists his team's feet are firmly on the accelerator to make sure they achieve their goal this year.

Braintree completed their biggest run chase of the season so far last weekend in beating Sudbury by three wickets and extending their lead at the top of the division two table to 40 points.

It is a commanding position for Cant and his players to be in ahead of a home game against third-placed Clacton on Saturday and, with eight games to go, the Dolphins skipper feels they have to hammer home their advantage now.

"Well there won’t be any let up or taking our foot off the accelerator from us," said Cant.

"We will keep playing the same positive cricket we have been all year and if we play to our potential, there’s no reason we shouldn’t win every game.

"After the slip-up we had earlier in the season at Little Bardfield and nearly losing to Dunmow, we approach every game with the upmost importance now.

"Every run, wicket and point matters in terms of getting us the the title we are aiming for."

Braintree won at Sudbury with several senior members of their squad unavailable, but Cant was expecting to be able to name a strong line-up for the visit of Clacton and said Essex Ladies player Grace Poole was also set for a return this weekend.

He added: "We are looking very strong, with Barry Stephens and Chris Leech coming back into the side this week.

"We also have Grace Poole returning for her first game with us since last season, as she has been on Essex Ladies duties.

"She will certainly add an exciting element to our bowling line-up.

"Unfortunately Dan Garner has had a nasty back injury this week, so he may be missing for the next week or so, which will be a big loss."

As well as the all-important 20-point haul it brought, the win at Sudbury was significant for Braintree as, after several games where they had batted first and defended big scores, it highlighted how the Dolphins' batsmen were able to chase down an imposing total themselves.

Sudbury had made an imposing 278 for six from their 45 overs, but that didn't faze the Braintree batsmen as, led by an 86 at the top of the order by top-scorer Warren Celiz and contributions down their line-up, Braintree passed their target with more than two overs to spare.

Cant said: "It was the first real big score we had to chase down this year and it was a really good to see our batting line-up performing under pressure and with real maturity.

"Especially on a day when not everything went to plan for our bowlers.

"It was a very good toss to win, with a damp pitch, cloud cover and some wind at the start of the day, deciding to bowl first turned out to be the right decision.

"The conditions and pitch did nothing other than get better throughout the day.

"Our opening bowlers were very much in form, with Josh Newman taking his best figures for the club and Ben Golds beating the edge too many times to count.

"Our fielding did let us down slightly with a couple of dropped catches, but it was never going to be an easy day in the field with a 40 yard boundary on three-quarters of the pitch.

"One of the Sudbury batsmen scored a very good hundred and at tea I think they thought they had the game in the bag, but we knew with the boundary being so short and the form our guys have been in, we were well in with a chance.

"Once again our top order came out fighting from the off, really taking the attack to the bowlers.

"When we had got to about 120 for one you could see the fielders' heads start to drop and with some great contributions, solid partnerships and mature batting, we managed to make light work of knocking off the runs in the end."