BERKSWELL returned from their top of the table clash at Ombersley with only three points after the Worcestershire side inflicted a four-wicket defeat on the Meeting House Lane side.
Batting first on a used track that appeared to have had little preparation, Berkswell were soon in trouble and by the eighth over, with the score on 16, Mark Best (4), Chris Whittock (0), and Tom Lewis (6) were all back in the pavilion.
A consolidation period of 13 overs by Mohammed Ahmed and Nick James prevented the loss of further wickets on the unpredictable surface but, with the scoreboard showing 49, Ahmed was then bowled by spinner Ollie Uffindall for a well grafted 18 runs.
James and skipper Dominic Ostler managed to keep the home side bowling attack at bay for another 7 overs with Ostler hitting some delightfully straight driven fours.
However, the 35 run partnership was broken when James (33) was given out lbw off Uffindall’s bowling. At 110 Grant Thornton (17) was caught behind, and one run later Ostler (26) was bowled with Uffindall claiming both wickets.
Jon Coleman and Jamie Spires were able to add another 23 runs before Coleman (13) became Uffindall’s fifth victim, and Gert Cloete (0) gave Uffindall a sixth wicket when he was bowled first ball.
Spires (15 not out) and last man Dave Brignull (5 not out) saw Berkswell through to the end of their allotted 47 overs and the innings closed on 144 for 9. Uffindall finishing with 6 for 41 off 14 overs.
In the Ombersley reply, Berkswell made the perfect start claiming the wicket of Freddie Wynn (4) in the second over. Liam Gwynn and Uday Kaul then proceeded to add another 50 runs in the course of 10 overs, but the partnership was broken with the introduction of James into the attack.
The left arm spinner had Gwynne (19) caught at deep square leg by Thornton, and then Jamie Hammond (0) stumped first ball by Whittock. The loss of two quick wickets raised the spirits of the visitors however, Kaul looked at ease and untroubled and continued to guide the home side towards the required total.