AN INSPIRED middle-order knock from Indian overseas star Prerak Mankad helped Kenilworth Wardens pick up maximum points against strugglers Barnt Green to consolidate their mid-table position in the Birmingham Premier League.
On a scorching afternoon at Glasshouse Park, the visitors won the toss and asked Mark Pidgeon’s side to bowl first on a wicket that looked likely to offer very little assistance to the bowlers.
Sutton and Harrison started cautiously for the away side, with opening bowlers Paul Rowe and Mankad finding the edge of the bat on numerous occasions with little reward.
The introduction of 18-year-old Finn McCreath saw him remove Harrison for 33 and two balls later Hargrave, who offered no shot to a ball that nipped back and clipped off stump.
At the other end, Matt Hancock proved age is no barrier with the athletic run-out of Warwickshire squad member Lamb and the visitors suddenly found themselves struggling at 79-3.
Hancock (4-40) and skipper Pidgeon (3-28) proved a threat all afternoon and, once visiting captain Sutton departed for 49 with the score on 118, Barnt Green lost their last six wickets for just 60 runs as they ended on an under-par 178 all out.
In reply the home side started brightly with the explosive Nick Seager hitting five fours and a six in the opening three overs to put Wardens into a strong position before Maynard, Mousley and McCreath quickly departed.
Seager then holed out in the deep off the bowling of Sutton and Wardens found themselves in big bother at 45-4.
Mankad then came to the party with a run-a-ball 82, brilliantly supported by youth product Harry Johnson, as an inexperienced visiting attack struggled to contain the Wardens pair.
Sutton offered Barnt Green late hope with the dismissal of Mankad but Johnson finished unbeaten on 48 as he steered the ship home.
Seventh-placed Wardens travel to Walsall on Saturday looking to move into the top half.