Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Weekend of mixed fortunes for Twenty20 champions

BERKSHIRE have made a stuttering start to their defence of the MCCA Twenty20 competition with two wins and two defeats in their Bank Holiday weekend double headers with Shropshire at Whitchurch and Buckinghamshire at Wargrave.

On Sunday, they lost their opening game by 11 runs. SHROPSHIRE were bowled out for 163 with Luke Beaven (3.2-0-24-3) taking the last three wickets with successive deliveries, two of his victims being smartly stumped by Jack Davies off wide deliveries.

Davies went on to make 52 off 39 balls, while James Morris hit 46 and Joe Thomas 32 not out, but Berkshire’s reply fell just short at 152-7.

The second game was equally as close, but this time it was Berkshire who secured victory by 12 runs.

They posted 164-9, thanks largely to Richard Morris, who hit 50 off 31 balls, and Davies with 41 from 27 deliveries on a pitch that favoured the slow bowlers.

The hosts reached 100-2 in the 14th over with Alex Phillips making 42 and Alexei Kervezee 40, but Euan Woods turned the game Berkshire’s way with figures of 4-0-23-4 and Shropshire were restricted to 152-9.

On Monday, the opening encounter saw the national champions beat BUCKINGHAMSHIRE by seven runs.

Put in to bat, Berkshire made 131-8 with Richard Morris making a run-a-ball 46, skipper James Morris 29 and Euan Brock 22.

Bucks fell just short at 124-6 (Garry Park 42) with Brandon Gilmour taking 3-25 and Euan Woods 2-25.

However, the visitors gained swift revenge by winning the second match by four runs.

Bucks, electing to bat first, were restricted to 127-8 (Park 37, Conrad Louth 31) with Woods claiming 3-17, Beaven 2-26 and Rhodri Lewis 2-27.

Woods opened the innings with Chris Peploe (23) and they put on 44 for the first wicket.

Richard Morris (25) was next to go with the total on 82, however, the batsmen found it hard to push the score along and Berks slipped behind the run rate.

Woods was bowled for 44 with the score on 114 and despite a brisk knock of 17 by Brock, Berks finished on 123-6.

Berkshire’s next Twenty20 game is against Herefordshire at Falkland CC on June 16, but before that, they play Dorset in the Trophy at Oratory School on June 2.

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