Barnsley Cricket Club are hoping to draw inspiration from the way the town's football team turned their season around.
The Shaw Laners slipped to a fourth defeat in five completed league games this season and fell back into the relegation zone on Saturday. They lost their first six wickets in an eight-run horror spell as they were bowled out for 117 chasing 243 at home to Wakefield Thornes.
The only team currently below them in the league are winless Rotherham Town who knocked Barnsley out of the League Cup on Monday after the Shaw Laners posted another disappointing total of 122. Those two sides meet again in a battle of the bottom two tomorrow and Shaw Lane captain Jon Trower hopes a victory will begin a similar resurgence to the one seen at Oakwell as the Reds went from bottom of League One in December to winning the Johnstone's Paint Trophy and promotion.
"We can draw strength from what the football club have done," said Trower, whose side are now 56 points off top.
"It is definitely a story we can look at for inspiration, which we need at the moment. If we lose at Rotherham we will be in big relegation trouble, our backs will be to the wall and the season will look very bleak. We are too big a club to be in this position.
"A lot of our players need to take a long, hard look at themselves including myself as the captain and one of the key batsmen. I have never seen as many zeros on a scorecard as I did on Saturday. Some of our batting was like schoolboy cricket. Our post-match analysis is going on for hours at the moment. "We need to be setting totals of around 200 but we are nowhere near. Hopefully we can start to move away from the relegation zone and we also have the Twenty20 Cup to look forward to."
Second-placed Wakefield Thornes made 243 for eight with Zohaib Ahmad and Oliver Jackson taking two wickets each. In reply, Barnsley's top run-scorer Ahmad was moved up the order to open and hit four fours in 26 off 18 balls. But his wicket started an incredible collapse from 31 for no loss to 39 for six. Trower made seven while there was no score from any of the next five batters as Stevie Walters, Nathan Firn, Beck Frostick, Spencer Lavender and Harvey Wootton were all out for ducks. Dan Waldron followed for one to leave the hosts at 59 for eight then Ali Jahangir and Ben Whitehouse both made 29 to take the score onto 117 all out.
At Rotherham on Monday, Barnsley won the toss and batted first. They reached 20 for none but lost Walters, who failed to score again, and Trower (13) in successive balls. Beck Frostick (1), Jahangir (5) and Tom Whittaker (2) followed as the Shaw Laners slipped to 41 for five. Firn (35) and Wootton (17) led a minor recovery but Barnsley were all out for 122 after losing their last four wickets for 18 runs. Rotherham looked to be cruising to victory at 97 for three but lost five quick wickets before securing the win. Barnsley's Jackson continued his good weekend as he claimed four for 34 while fellow spinner Jahangir took two for 20.