NEWPORT Fugitives hope to keep their winning habit as they set the early pace along with Gwent rivals Panteg in the South Wales Premier Cricket League Division Two promotion race.

The Fugies have made a marvellous start to life in the Premier League following their rise from the South East Wales Cricket League.

Last week they recorded their fourth win from four by beating Clydach by three wickets in a tense clash that went to the final over.

They took 18 points from the game after chasing down 244 thanks to Nathan Millichip’s 71 at number three and 78 from Jack Thorpe-Yon at four.

It means they enjoy a slender one-point advantage over Gwent foes Panteg ahead of tomorrow’s home encounter with Tondu.

“It’s going really well and we are playing with confidence after two good seasons where we won promotion,” said captain Matthew Evans, who hands the reins to Millichip while unavailable this weekend because of work commitments.

“Winning is a nice habit to have and we are having a go with the bat while the bowlers have been excellent with our spinners containing sides.

“It’s been nice playing some new teams but there is less of the unknown about Tondu, Miskin Manor and St Fagans.

“I think St Fagans and Panteg look to be the two teams to beat and they are targeting going up but we’ll just try to keep our run going.”

Panteg have won two and enjoyed a pair of winning draws as they bid to go up to Division One after two agonising misses.

They travel to Clydach on the back of a rain-reduced home encounter with Swansea that yielded 17 points, the visitors hanging on at 105-9 in pursuit of 139-8 from 30 overs.

Division One champions Newport slipped down the table into fifth after a frustrating abandoned game at Ammanford last weekend.

Tomorrow they host leaders Bridgend at Spytty Park and could do with taking the spoils to stop the 2015 champs extending their 18-point lead.

Meanwhile, Newport will defend their Premier League T20 crown at the Swalec Stadium after winning Festival One of the qualifying tournament.

They comfortably beat Panteg by nine wickets in the semi-final after limiting their Gwent rivals to 81 for 9 and then overcame the hosts, Tata Steel, by five wickets.

Newport Fugitives won’t be joining them at finals day after losing to Penarth in the final of Festival Two.

They beat hosts Miskin Manor by six wickets in the semi-final but lost by 59 runs in the final.

Mumbles won Festival Three after beating Ammanford while Port Talbot beat Pontarddulais in the Festival Four final.

SOMEONE’S perfect record will go when Newbridge entertain Brecon in Division One of the South East Wales Cricket League.

The pair will attempt to record a fourth win when they clash at the Welfare Ground while second-placed Sudbrook, who visit Chepstow, are also three from three.

’Bridge finished third last season behind promoted Newport Fugitives and Chepstow, who broke their duck at Blackwood last weekend when dismissing their hosts for just 64 after posting 162.

At the bottom end of the table, Malpas and Blackwood are still hunting a first win that would see them leap up the rankings given that fifth-placed Chepstow are just 11 points away at this early stage.

The pair attempt to get up and running against Croesyceiliog at home and at Pentyrch respectively, while Usk, sixth after a first win against Malpas last week, head to Pontypridd.