Berkshire not giving up title race yet

Berkshire not giving up title race yet

By Dave Wright
21 July 2015
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Berkshire draw with Devon at Finchampstead

​​Berkshire are refusing to give up the Western Division title race despite being held to a draw by Devon at Finchampstead this week
But captain James Morris does admit that they will have to win both of their remaining matches - away to Cheshire and then Dorset - if they are to stand any chance of overhauling both Cornwall and Oxfordshire.
Berkshire, now with two wins and two draws, fought back well to put themselves in the driving seat against winless Devon, but were unable bowl out their visitors for a second time on a flat wicket, which saw three batsmen record centuries.
The first of them came from Waqas Hussain, w​ho cracked ​​​124 after Morris had won the toss and elected to bat on Sunday.
It was fortunate the Slough star was in good form as several other batsmen were dismissed cheaply before Chris Peplo​e, with 67​, ​​ and Stewart Davison​,​ 26​,​ helped lift the total to 286 all out.
​Devon ​made a shaky start and were reduced to 53-4. However, Matt Golding (102) and 17-year-old Ben Green (108) turned the game around with a partnership of 187. Golding faced 164 balls, but scored his runs off just 49 of them.
Useful contributions from the tail-enders took the total to 347-9 in their allotted 90 overs.
Berkshire, with a first innings deficit of 61, slumped to 76-4, but then strung together three useful partnerships.
The Morris brothers, James (26) and Richard, put on 58 for the fifth wicket, while Richard and Andy Rishton shared a stand of 68 before Richard was out for 63 with the total on 202-6.
The most productive partnership, however, came for the seventh wicket with Peploe (64) and Rishton adding 97 runs in 17 overs. When Reading's Rishton was dismissed on 60, Berkshire declared at 305-8.
This left Devon requiring 245 to win in a minimum of 41 overs. But neither side ever looked capable of winning the game and the captains agreed to come off early with the West Country men on 141-3 off 38 overs.

Berkshire 1st innings: 286 (83.1 overs; Hussain 124, Peploe 67).
Devon 1st innings: 347-9 (90 overs; Green 108, Golding 102; Peploe 3-109).
Berkshire 2nd innings: 305-8 dec (85.4 overs; Peploe 64, R. Morris 63, Rishton 60).
Devon 2nd innings: 141-3 (38 overs; Lewis 66no, Thompson 41).

Berkshire team: Simon Macey (Harefield), Waqas Hussain (Slough), Harry Stephens (Datchet), James Morris (Bashley), Richard Morris (Bashley), Andy Rishton (Reading), Chris Peploe (Ealing), Stewart Davison (Henley), Matt Carter (Henley), Tom Nugent (Henley), Callum Gregory (Finchampstead). 12th man: Ali Raja (Slough).

Next game: v Cheshire at Alderley Edge on August 2-4.

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