Friday, 25 June 2021

Masterful Morris smashes double century in easy win

Masterful Morris smashes double century in easy win

A DOUBLE century for Richard Morris and two five-wicket hauls from Chris Peploe were among the highlights of a comprehensive 212-run win for Berkshire over Wales Minor Counties at Abergavenny this week.

Morris hammered 205 — his highest ever total for the county — as Berkshire posted a formidable first-innings total of 425.

He faced 200 balls, scoring off 101 of them, spent 284 minutes at the crease and hit five sixes and 20 fours.

He was dropped shortly after moving into double figures and also survived a confident lbw but otherwise, it was an imperious batting performance from the Henley player and a masterclass for the Wales youngsters.

It was torture in the searing heat for a home team whose average age is just over 20 and they deserve a lot of credit for the way they stuck to their task in the blistering heat.

Berkshire’s vice-captain was involved in three productive partnerships, putting on 99 with brother James, who contributed 19, 104 with Dan Lincoln, who made 54, and 122 with Stewart Davison, who made 50.

Then the defending champions bowled out Wales for 224 in their first innings with Peploe taking 5-64 off 22 overs. Skipper James Morris did not enforce the follow-on and instead Berkshire went looking for quick runs to put the game beyond Wales’ reach.

And they did just that with Waqas Hussain and Ollie Wilkin cracking 154 for the first wicket in just 17 overs.

Hussain fell for 50 and Wilkin went on to make 90, which came off 59 balls in 76 minutes with three sixes and 13 fours.

From then on, there were quick runs and wickets as Berkshire slipped from 194-2 to 231-7 before the declaration was made with Wales being asked to make an impossible 451 to win.

They lost two wickets to Tom Nugent with only 10 runs on the board but Berkshire were then met with some stiff resistance, Joe Voke and Sean Griffiths putting on 141 for the third wicket.

But both fell lbw to Peploe, Griffiths for 57 and then 18-year-old Voke for 96.

Peploe and Ali Raja bowled unchanged for 57 overs on the final day, the former taking 5-85 off 33 overs to make it 10 wickets for the match, while Raja finished with 2-59 off 28 overs and two balls.

Wales crashed from 151-2 to 238 all out, leaving Berkshire the victors by 212 runs.

With 24 points, Berkshire take over at the top of the Western Division with two of their six matches completed. Speaking after the game, Richard Morris said: “Obviously my innings helped, but this was more of a collective effort than an individual one. It was a combination of a lot of hard work from all of the squad over the last few months.”

Berkshire had two players making their senior debuts, Sunbury’s Sam Burgess, who made 23 in the first innings and 20 in the second batting at number three, and Datchet’s Joe Thomas, who scored five and 16.

The county’s next game is against Wiltshire at Falkland from July 2 to 4.

Meanwhile, Berkshire had a win and a defeat on the opening weekend of the ECB Women’s T20 Championship last Sunday.

Playing at North Maidenhead, they reached 87-4 with two balls to spare to defeat Kent (84 all out) by six wickets.

Bowling honours went to Emma Walker (3-15) and Lissy Macleod (3-14) with Lauren Bell taking 2-18.

In the Berkshire innings, Carla Rudd made 33 not out and Anna Harris 29.

But they were then beaten by Lancashire (130-9) by 28 runs.

Macleod made 22 and Mia Rogers and Ashleigh Muttitt both 18 before being bowled out for 102.

More News:

POLL: Have your say