CRICKET: BERKSWELL returned from their trip to Ombersley with another win after defeating the Worcestershire side by 64 runs in their latest Birmingham Premier League match.
Dominic Ostler’s side remain joint leaders at this stage of the season following two wins on the spin.
Invited to bat first on a dry wicket, Berkswell’s early batsmen found run-scoring difficult at the wicket appeared to lack pace.
The visiting side were reduced to 39/3 by the 13th over having lost Mohammed Ahmed (4), Chris Whittock (2), and Alex Hepburn (16).
Mark Best and Tom Lewis managed to stem the loss of wickets and advanced the score to 68 when Best (28) was dismissed.
A fifth wicket partnership of 33 between Lewis and Nick James came to an end when Lewis (28) was caught in the 32nd over with the score on 101.
Skipper Dominic Ostler and James took advantage of some loose bowling from Brett D’Oliveira and Nick Slade and started to find the boundary rope.
But having compiled a 53 run partnership in 12 overs, James (36) was then stumped off the bowling of Oliver Uffindall.
The departure of James saw the arrival of Grant Thornton at the crease – and he also took a shine to D’Oliveira’s bowling taking 16 runs off a single over.
When the innings closed on 205 for 6 at the end of the 50th over Ostler remained undefeated on 41 and Thornton 33 not out.
With the home side having chased down a similar total the previous week it was uncertain if Berkswell would be able to restrict Ombersley.
But any doubts the visitors may have had were quickly resolved when opening bowler Ryan Sidebottom trapped Jack Haynes (5) lbw in the 3rd over.
Thornton had Joshua Dell (1) caught at third slip by Sidebottom in the 4th over.
The home side found run scoring difficult and their plights was made over in the ninth over when Nick Hammond (0) was also adjudged lbw to Sidebottom.
Liam Gwynn (27) was then bowled by Dave Brignull in his first over.
With the scoreboard reading 44 for 4 and the usually prolific Ombersley top order all back in the pavilion, it was left to the middle order to attempt to salvage the dire situation they found themselves in against Berkswell’s excellent bowling.
However, having only added another fifteen runs in eight overs, the fifth wicket went down and then the sixth wicket was lost in the 27th over while just 76 runs were on the board.
The middle order collapse continued 12 runs later as the 7th wicket fell in the 31st over, but tail enders Ed Baylis (28) and Andy Robertson (19) managed to add another 44 runs before both were out in the 45th over.
With just the injured D’Oliveira (7 not out) and last man Nick Slade left to bat, it was only a matter of time before the innings would be brought to an end.
And so it proved as Slade (2) was finally caught in the 48th over by Brignull off the bowling of James.
Dave Brignull proved the pick of the Berkswell bowlers with 29/4 off his ten overs.
Berkswell next play on Saturday in a home fixture against West Bromwich Dartmouth.