Lee Edgar’s career is one in which external figures may not have always matched his internal standing within the Laurelvale camp.
However, a player long considered one who allows his team-mates to shine, is now grabbing the spotlight this season thanks to a return of 36 wickets across 12 appearances.
He walked away from Section Two league tests on Saturday and Tuesday with back-to-back figures of five wickets for 13 to help see off, respectively, BISC and Victoria.
Increased swing and pace this season have enhanced Edgar’s threat with the ball and yielded returns alongside his traditional strengths of economy and reliability.
“Lee has always been a player who you can give the ball in a tight situation,” said David Sinton, the Laurelvale captain. “Now this season he is getting his reward in terms of wickets to go along with that tight consistency.
“Other bowlers would be quick to highlight how Lee’s approach leads to opportunities for them to pick up wickets so it is great to see him now also making a mark on that front.
“Against BISC he came in and built on the good work by Michael Burns to claim two important wickets in quick succession.
“He came up with five for 13 once again during the defeat of Victoria and now sits on 36 by our count from nine league games, plus cup ties and Twenty20 play.
“Gary Murphy got three on Saturday and the same again against Victoria in the midweek win so that overall bowling form is a real positive.”
Two wins in four days have placed Laurelvale within sight of the division’s leading sides ahead of a weekend home clash with Saintfield.
Sinton played a key role in the weekend win against BISC with 61 during a 100-plus partnership alongside Craig Irwin.
It allowed Laurelvale to post 201 overall despite sitting struggling on 53 for the loss of four wickets.
The BISC response was cut short at 164.
A midweek test with Victoria, originally scheduled for two nights, was limited to play on Tuesday as Laurelvale added another slick result to the fine run.
Victoria finished on 70, with Daryl Henry and Philip Weir getting Laurelvale over the line.
“Confidence is high and we are enjoying the good run which, hopefully, can continue in July during some important league and cup games,” said Sinton. “It was a professional chase against Victoria to wrap up the match in one night.
“We went out to chase the Victoria target with 21 overs of play available and got the right result.
“I was due a score and, thankfully, it came on Saturday as part of a partnership with Craig that allowed us to post a competitive overall tally.
“BISC bowled well and had us in trouble at one point before we managed to get back on track.
“Then it came down to our bowling and it was another important result going into the Victoria match.”