BENFLEET are in seventh heaven after overcoming a struggling Basildon & Pitsea side in a local derby.

Paul Frensham and Gavin Blowes put in stunning performances as the Shepherd Neame Essex League Division Three promotion chasers notched a seventh consecutive win.

And Benfleet captain Rob Zammit was pleased to see his side claim local bragging rights.

Zammit said: “It was good to get another win and claim our seventh victory in a row.

“We haven’t done well against Basildon & Pitsea in previous years, so it was nice to get our second win against them this season and take local bragging rights.

“Everyone chipped in and it was a very pleasing performance.”

Basildon & Pitsea, who celebrate their 70th anniversary next month, have struggled since suffering relegation last season.

And the visitors’ batsmen failed to go on and notch a big total at Woodside Park.

Wicketkeeper Vivek Devgun was the most potent with the bat, scoring 26, but no other batsman was able to score more than 20 runs as Basildon & Pitsea were all out for 118.

Paul Frensham notched bowling figures of 4-28, while Callum Wheeler also stood out after taking 3-28.

And Zammit was full of praise for his side’s bowling unit.

Zammit, who took one wicket himself, added: “Paul bowled really well because he was coming up the hill into a strong breeze.

“His bowling was excellent and he was fully deserving of his four wickets.

“Callum also bowled really well, for his three wickets, but the whole team contributed because we took some good catches as well.”

Benfleet reached their target for the loss of just three wickets.

Ben Munday, Callum Wheeler and Craig Platt were the men to fall, but the second-placed side were safely led across the line by Gavin Blowes and Samuel Coelho.

Opening batsman Blowes - who captained Benfleet last term - finished on 40 not out, while Coelho was unbeaten on 28.

Basildon & Pitsea bowler Phillip Tooke took two wickets in three overs, while Craig Thompson sent Munday back to the pavilion.

But Zammit insists the victory means Benfleet go into this weekend’s clash - against league leaders Old Brentwoods - full of confidence.

The skipper confirmed: “We are 100 per cent full of confidence.

“You don’t win seven in a row for no reason.

“We know our strengths and want to keep the run going.”