FRESH from taking his 600th wicket, Brothers skipper David Richardson played a vital role with the bat in his team's crucial victory over South East Redbacks.
With only one round of matches in this season's first division two-day competition, Brothers' tail wagged to secure first innings points in Saturday's match at the Ivor Marsden Memorial Sporting Complex.
Reputable left-arm spin bowler Richardson shared in an eighth-wicket stand of 45 with young gun Jonathan Bill to guide Brothers past the Redbacks' 200-run target set the previous weekend.
Starting the day at 1/20, Brothers lost key opener Michael Ridgewell early and were in "shaky'' positions at 4/69 and 8/160.
Before Richardson and Bill finished the job, Mark Sharrad and Dan Trevorrow also dug deep to keep Brothers in the game.
While happy to have contributed a handy batting performance after his bowling milestone, Richardson praised his team's commitment for getting the job done.
"It was really frustrating for the Redbacks but a really good win for us,'' the Ipswich and West Moreton Cricket Association stalwart said.
"It's satisfying, particularly due to the fact that the batsmen didn't really fire.
"It was just a bit of grit and determination at the end that got us over the line.''
Brothers' win on the opening round of the two-day competition gives them a boost preparing to play Centrals in the new year.
Heading into the Christmas break, Richardson said his team was keen for a strong 2018 performance after being unable to feature prominently in the recent rain-affected Harding- Madsen Shield one-day series.
"We're not a one-day side. We don't have age on our side,'' the dedicated cricketer nicknamed "Richo'' said.
"We're more suited to two-day cricket.''
However, Brothers have faced a few challenges of their own in recent weeks for a welcome reason at the family-focused Ipswich club.
Players like Taylor Peach and Ridgewell have missed games celebrating the birth of children.
Richardson has played in more than 200 matches in 22 consecutive seasons.
He took his 600th wicket in snaring 4/59 the previous weekend against the Redbacks.
The captain was delighted Brothers completed the year on a high.
"You've only got one round of two-day fixtures (three matches and a bye this season) so if you drop a game, it's pretty hard to come back from,'' the experienced cricketer said.
"We got there yesterday and that's probably the most important thing.''