16th Aug, 2018

Berkswell slide to opening day loss

Craig Gibbons 11th May, 2018

BERKSWELL got their Birmingham League Premier Division campaign off to a slow start with a 15-run home defeat to Shrewsbury.

Having won the toss and invited the visitors to bat first, Berkswell were looking odds-on to secure a first win of the campaign when Shrewsbury found themselves at 93-7 at the end of the 34th over.

Excellent seam bowling from club stalwart Dave Brignull (3-30), combined with the pace of Grant Thornton (3-26) and Leicestershire’s Ateeq Javid’s (1-15) spin bowling, had put the home side in a strong position.

However, the Berkswell bowling attack then lost its momentum and the Shrewsbury lower order batsmen George Panayi (60) and Tyler Ibbotson (19) combined to put together an eighth-wicket partnership of 61 before their innings eventually closed at the end of the 50th over on 167-9.

The Berkswell reply suffered an early setback when Danial Chaudhry was deemed to be leg before off only the second ball of the innings and, in an almost carbon copy of the Shrewsbury innings, Berkswell lost wickets at regular intervals.

Of the top six batsmen, only Chris Whittock (25) and Tom Milnes (38) made double figures.

At the conclusion of the 34th over Berkswell were on 113-8 with skipper Dominic Ostler using all his experience to patiently steer his side towards the winning total.

However, with the overs gradually running out and the boundaries drying up, the pressure began to tell as the Shrewsbury bowlers gave little away.

Agonisingly for the home side, Ostler ran out of partners and the innings came to an end in the 47th over with the skipper remaining undefeated on 33.

Berkswell will hope for better fortunes on Saturday when they travel to West Bromwich Dartmouth.

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