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Berkshire go 17 points clear in title race

Berkshire go 17 points clear in title race

By Dave Wright
6th August
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Berkshire 350-8 & 200-8 dec beat Shropshire 142 & 167 by 241 runs. Points: Berkshire 24, Shropshire 3


Berkshire stayed well on course to retain the Western Division title after inflicting an emphatic 241-run defeat on Shropshire at Shifnal.
Their fourth win of the season leaves them 17 points clear of nearest challengers Oxfordshire with fixtures against Cornwall (away) and Dorset (at Wargrave) remaining.
In all, its 12 victories in a row when their two national play-off wins against Lincolnshire are added to their impressive run.
Despite missing several key players, the defending champions were simply too strong Shropshire, for whom only one batsman - Will Parton with 36 runs in the first innings – reached 30 in the entire match.
Berkshire took control of the game on the opening day, posting a formidable 90-over total of 350-8 with skipper James Morris making an excellent 96 and opener Archie Carter 83.
Carter's Wokingham team-mate Callum Creighton was given his senior debut following his 10 wickets in two Berkshire Under-17 games last week.
The left-arm seamer who attends Shiplake College was soon among the wickets, taking 1-17 off eight overs, but the bowling honours went to Andy Rishton who claimed 5-46 as Shropshire were shot out for 142, a deficit of 208.
Berkshire didn't enforce the follow-on; instead preferring to go for quick runs in their second innings to take the game beyond the home county's reach.
With Euan Woods top-scoring with 50 and Henley colleague Michael Williams making 36 not out, the visitors declared on 200-8, setting their hosts an impossible target of 409.
Shropshire didn't go down easily, surviving for 100 overs before being dismissed for 167 with Luke Beaven taking 4-20, Rishton 3-42, Chris Peploe 2-35 (off 35 overs) and Woods 1-38.
Wokingham's Sukhi Kang took a total of six catches behind the stumps in his first Championship game for three seasons.

Berkshire are back in action this Sunday (11am) when they face Wiltshire in the semi-finals of the Unicorns Trophy at Finchampstead.
Admission to the ground is free and there will be a barbecue along with a bar.
The winners will meet Cumberland or Staffordshire in the final at Wormsley on August 28.
Wiltshire's hopes of catching Berkshire in the Championship title race look all but over following a 139-run defeat by Wales inside two days at South Wilts CC. It was Wales' first Championship win in three years.

Western Division
Redruth: Dorset 136 & 275-8 (Luke Webb 87, Alex Eckland 62), Cornwall 234 (Matt Robins 94). Cornwall (10 pts ) drew with Dorset (8 pts).
Challow & Childrey: Oxfordshire 294 (Tom Cosford 76, Gareth Andrew 67 not out) & 210-7 dec (Jordan Garrett 79), Herefordshire 173 (Matthew Warner 5-24) & 169. Oxfordshire (23 pts) beat Herefordshire (4 pts) by 162 runs.
Alderley Edge: Devon 85 & 213 (David Wainwright 5-43), Cheshire 305-9 (Robert Sehmi 75, Rick Moore 52). Cheshire (23 pts) beat Devon (4 pts) by an innings and seven runs.
South Wilts CC: Wales 222 (Cameron Herring 67) & 211 (Joe King 6-56), Wiltshire 140 and 154 (Thomas Bevan 5-59). Wales (21 pts) beat Wiltshire (4 pts) by 139 runs.

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