May 29, 2003

Convincing win for Berkshire over Oxfordshire

Berkshire's seamers dominated the match throughout to secure a ten-wicket win over Oxfordshire in the opening Minor Counties Championship match of the season, and this despite losing half of the allotted overs due to the wet conditions.

When play finally got underway after an early lunch was taken on the second day, Berkshire, having elected to field, soon made inroads into the Oxfordshire batting. James Theunissen took his first five-wicket haul and he was ably supported by Nick Denning and Steve Naylor as Oxfordshire were dismissed for 147 in just 47.5 overs.

Newcomer Richard Howitt and Lee Nurse gave Berkshire a sound start with 61 for the first wicket. Brogan, Prichard and Wood all made useful contributions without going on to make a big score. Berkshire, 179 for four overnight, declared at lunch on the third day on 280 for nine, a lead of 133.

Berkshire's seamers again struck early, Theunissen finished with five for 62 giving match figures of ten for 90. Again there was good support from Denning and debutant Steve Bloyce. Play was halted by heavy drizzle with Oxfordshire on 134for eight and it looked as though the weather would have the last word, but the skies lightened, the remaining wickets fell quickly, leaving Berkshire to score just four runs to complete a convincing win.