21st Jul, 2019

Berkswell looking good after victory over title rivals Shrewsbury

Craig Gibbons 26th Jul, 2018

BERKSWELL moved 15 points clear at the top of the Birmingham League Premier Division with a six-wicket victory over title rivals Shrewsbury.

Shrewsbury chose to bat but found runs hard to come by against opening bowlers Tom Milnes and Sadaf Hussain.

Will Parton and Rob Foster struggled to settle with only nine runs coming off the first six overs.

With both batsmen unable to cope with the fast and accurate bowling, pressure began to mount, especially when Foster (1) was caught out by Dan Clark.

Parton (14) was next to go with Shrewsbury on 23.

New batsmen Ed Foster and Ben Stebbings were also unable to regularly add to the tally as they managed to add just 16 runs before the former was caught behind for 13.

Stebbings (14) departed soon after, bowled by Josh Aspinall to leave the hosts on 50-4 in the 25th over which soon became 55-5 when Henry Blofield (1) fell LBW to Nick James.

Henry Wassell (7) was then caught out by Dominic Ostler as Shrewsbury fell to 64-6.

George Panayi (10) and Liam Lofts tried to add respectability to the scorecard but a seventh-wicket partnership of 12 was ended when the former was caught by Aspinall off James’ spin bowling.

Some lofty blows from Lofts and Tyler Ibbotson added 34 runs but the partnership was broken when Lofts (21) was given LBW off James.

And when Ibbotson (20) was caught out by Ostler off Mohammed Ahmed, Shrewsbury were at 112-9.

The last pair of Mike Barnard and Lewis Evans could only add nine more runs before Barnards was adjudged LBW to gift James (4-34) a fourth wicket as Shrewsbury closed on 121 all out.

In reply Berkwell got off to a shaky start, losing Ahmed (1) in the fifth over.

However, Dan Chaundry and Chris Whittock (13) steadied the ship and added 40 runs before the latter was given out LBW.

Chaundry (27) kept the scoreboard ticking over with a couple of big sixes but soon lost his wicket in the 14th over to leave Berkswell at 61-3.

James and Tom Lewis then combined with a 45-run partnership in the seven overs to put Berkswell in control.

James (30) was next to go but an explosive innings from Lewis (44 not out) ensured Berkswell claimed the win.

Berkswell entertain second-placed West Bromwich Dartmouth on Saturday in another crunch clash.

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