Tuesday, 22 June 2021

Roberts’ ton helps county side to first win of season

MICHAEL Roberts cracked a century to set up Berkshire’s first Unicorns Trophy win of the season.

MICHAEL Roberts cracked a century to set up Berkshire’s first Unicorns Trophy win of the season.

The Henley opening bat made 101 out of a total of 238-6 before Berkshire restricted Buckinghamshire to 213-7, leaving them the victors by 25 runs.

It was Berkshire’s first win in any competition since they defeated Bucks at Dinton in the same one-day competition nearly 12 months ago.

Roberts featured in four productive partnerships after Berkshire had won the toss on their first ever visit to Wokingham’s Sadlers End ground.

He dominated the opening stand of 51 with Simon Macey only contributing nine runs in 71 minutes as the batsmen made a cautious start on another very chilly day.

Datchet’s Harry Stephens joined Roberts in the 18th over and they lifted the total to 119 before the former was caught for 34 in the 35th over.

Roberts and Richard Morris put on another 54 runs for the third wicket, and that was followed by a stand of 40 in just four overs with skipper James Morris.

Roberts moved on to 101 before being trapped lbw by Hamza Riazuddin. He faced 136 balls in his 181-minute stay at the crease. He hit one six and eight fours.

Chris Peploe was run out for five and Henley wicket-keeper Stewart Davison was bowled by Riazuddin for one, leaving James Morris 30 not out and Waqas Hussain unbeaten on eight at the end of the 50 overs.

Riazuddin, who plays for west Berkshire club Falkland, finished with 3-48 off 10 overs.

When the visitors went in to bat they hit immediate trouble, losing two wickets to Hussain and Matt Carter with only one run on the board.

Bucks progressed to 42-2 before losing two more wickets to the bowling of Henley spinner Euan Brock and Callum Gregory in the 15th and 16th overs.

Berks were now in control of the game, with the visitors being tied down by a varied Berkshire attack.

Their victory charge was held up by Dan Hampton and Riazuddin, the pair putting on 142 for the fifth wicket in 29 overs and for a short time it looked as Bucks might even pull the match out of the fire.

However, in going for a another big hit off Peploe, Hampton fell to a fine catch on the long-on boundary by Brock, having hit 77 off 84 deliveries, with the help of three sixes and six fours. In his next over, Peploe had Riazuddin stumped by Davison for 68, which came off 99 balls and contained eight fours.

Carter bowled Matt Rance with the last ball of the day.

Berkshire play the third of their four Unicorns Trophy group games on Sunday when they travel to Stone to play Staffordshire.

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