JACK Haines’s blistering knock of 81 from just 36 balls “lifted the spirits” in the Goatacre dressing room as they laid the foundations for their first Premier Two victory of the season, according to all-rounder Matt House.

Haines spanked eight maximums in his blitzkrieg innings, as Goatacre raced to 188 all out in a rain-reduced 25-overs-a-side contest with Ilminster.

House followed his teammate’s performance up with a spell of 3-33 in four overs, keeping his nerve in the final over when Ilminster required 11 runs for the win but ended up six short. However, he dumped the praise on Haines post-match.

“Jack was the main one. He set the platform with his 81 and Ed (Wilkins) batted well as well for 50-odd,” he said.

“It lifts the spirit of the team. It’s just the way he bats and he only knows one way to bat. That’s just Jack.

“It really does set a really good tone for everybody else going into bat, knowing he’s blasted runs quite quickly “It was nervous for me because I was bowling. It was very tight.

“We didn’t bowl very well to start with at them.

“Their opening bat got runs and we bowled to where he wanted to hit it, which didn’t help. It was a tight game, a bit too tight really.

“Bowling-wise, Brad (Dawson) and Kev (Iles) did really well and didn’t go for too many.

“I didn’t start very well. My first two overs went for a lot and then I came back alright for the last couple.”

After registering seven ducks and being bowled out for 66 by Potterne on the opening day, the victory sent Goatacre top of the table after two outings, vindicating the amount of work put into preparing the ground at the small village club.

“I think that’s why we pushed so hard to get the game on,” said House. “We did a lot of work to get it on and the umpires were really good, and fair play to them.

“They were more than happy to wait around and see what the weather did.

“It was up to them and they were really good at it.”