BERKSHIRE crashed out of the Unicorns Trophy when losing by two wickets to DEVON at Exmouth
BERKSHIRE crashed out of the Unicorns Trophy when losing by two wickets to DEVON at Exmouth on Sunday.
Preparations did not go to plan as they were forced to make two changes to the squad named last week.
Skipper James Morris discovered his injured left thumb was fractured and not dislocated as he was originally told and is now in plaster, while Chris Peploe received a one-match ban from the Minor Counties Cricket Association following an incident which occurred during the win over Oxfordshire the previous week.
They were replaced by youngsters Billy Rogers (Finchampstead) and Brandon Gilmour (Downend) with both making their Trophy debuts.
Henley’s Richard Morris took over the captaincy from his brother and soon joined Gilmour at the crease, as openers Waqas Hussain (0) and Michael Roberts (2) were dismissed in the first three overs.
Morris (60 off 70 balls) and Zimbabwe-born Gilmour (28) added 96 for the third wicket to take the total to 99, but both departed in the 24th over.
This brought together Henley’s Euan Woods and Rishton and they put on 28 before Woods fell for 13.
Rogers joined Rishton and they put on 53 for the sixth wicket, taking the total to 181 after 44 overs. Rishton was dismissed for 35 and five runs later Rogers was bowled for 28.
Matt Carter contributed nine runs and Berkshire were all back in the pavilion for 216, with Zak Bess taking 4-22 off 9.3 overs.
Carter opened the bowling and captured the first three Devon wickets, leaving the hosts 56-3.
Devon skipper Rob Woodman improved his side’s position with a half century, but when they lost their eighth wicket at 174 with seven overs remaining, a Berkshire victory seemed possible.
However, that changed as Dominic Bess, in particular, and cousin Zak Bess decided that attacking the bowling was the best course to take in a win-or-bust situation.
Dominic, making his Trophy debut, smashed 56 off 44 balls, while the more patient Zak hit 16 off 21 in an unbroken partnership of 44 as Devon reached their target off the first ball of the final over.
Berkshire can now concentrate on the three-day championship, which starts on June 5 when they take on Herefordshire at Colwall CC.