Topics:  baseball, brisbane bandits, josh roberts, perth heat

Roberts aims to fire up Bandits against Heat

Josh Roberts
Josh Roberts

JOSH Roberts is planning to lead by example to get his Brisbane Bandits back on track in the Australian Baseball League.

The Bandits hadn't lost a series this season until last weekend when they went down 3-1 to Sydney in Lismore.

"It was a tough weekend there," Ipswich product and Bandits captain Roberts said.

The Bandits suffered at the hands of former Ipswich pitcher Chris Oxspring.

Australian representative Roberts was one of the few players to have any success against him.

Roberts was the only Bandit to notch a multi-hit game with Oxspring pitching and hit his third home-run of the year off him.

"I've done well against him the last couple of times we've played them," Roberts said.

"He's probably the best pitcher in the league."

Unfortunately his teammates didn't share Roberts' success and they subsequently slipped from second to fourth on the ABL ladder.

It doesn't get any easier this weekend as the Bandits fly across the country to take on the ladder-leading Perth Heat in a four-game series starting tonight.

"That will be tough," Roberts said. "But it will be good to see where we're at against the best side in the comp."

The pressure will again be on Roberts to deliver, as captain and his team's leading home-run hitter.

However it is no greater than the pressure he puts on himself to deliver with the bat, while taking the captaincy duties in his stride.

"It's alright," Roberts said.

"Nothing really changes.

"I try to lead by example rather than be a yeller."

Against Perth, the Bandits face a tough ask but Roberts knows where the Bandits need to lift to be competitive.

"I think it's the hitters," he said. "We've got to score some runs because we've got good pitchers."

If they can do that, Roberts believes the Bandits have a team that can challenge for the title.

"We're definitely a side that could win it, so long as we can improve throughout the season," he said.

"Against Sydney we had loaded bases at the bottom of the ninth when we were done by one run. We haven't reached our peak yet."



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