BASEBALL: Redbacks beat champs

THE Essex Redbacks bounced back from a tough loss in the opening game of the season to beat the defending national champions London Metros 5-4 in an enthralling match to start their 2014 season.

The Redbacks, fielding a couple of new players as well as a group of experienced stars, were jubilant after winning the second match of the double header on the back of a big triple by first baseman CJ Evans and a game-winning hit from rookie Neil Cockrell.

Manager Vince Warner said: “The performances of our new players was fantastic, with Neil Cockrell and Alastair McDonald showing qualities well beyond their experience of the sport.

“It was disappointing to lose the first game after scoring seven runs, but the Metros were champions last year for a reason. To bounce back with some great defence and some timely hits was important for us as we build again for another successful campaign.”

Assistant manager Sam Rounce said: “It was a massive win for us. Last year, we struggled after a good early start in the National Baseball League, and this victory was our first competitive win for over a year. If we continue to put in performances like those we managed today, I think we’ll be celebrating a lot more than last season.”

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