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May 3, 2005
Rain had a major say as the C&G Trophy kicked off at various unlikely venues, including Brondby in Denmark and Rotterdam in Holland. It is the annual opportunity for the Minor Counties and some smaller cricketing countries to spring a surprise over the established counties. There was no play between Devon and Essex at Exmouth or Northumberland and Middlesex at Jesmond. Matches not completed today will continue tomorrow when the remaining fixtures also start. However, some action was possible with the counties, so far, avoiding any embarrassing defeats.
Wiltshire came closest to causing an upset, pushing Kent all the way at Salisbury. The minor county dismissed Kent for 160 inside their 50 overs but the Kent bowlers showed their experience as they squeezed home by nine runs. Simon Cook took four wickets, including the top-scorer, Michael Coles, for 32. A fighting 24 from Richard Bedbrook got Wiltshire close, but he could not quite do enough. Michael Carberry (41) lifted Kent after they slumped to 72 for 5. But they had the bowlers to thank for not joining that unenviable list of first-class counties who have fallen to their less illustrious colleagues.
Northamptonshire thrashed Denmark by eight wickets at Brondby - click here for match report.
Gloucestershire are still favourites to overcome Berkshire despite a fighting performance from the minor county. Gloucestershire failed to completely capitalise on a second-wicket stand of 118 between Phil Weston (80) and Chris Taylor (57) that took them to 164 for 2. Nick Denning, the former Essex player, took three wickets to limit the damage in the final overs. After an early strike from James Averis, Berkshire progressed steadily but Gloucestershire have plenty of one-day experience in their attack.
Holland face a stiff task on their reserve day against Warwickshire, requiring 137 more runs in 23 overs. They do, at least, still have Daan van Bunge, their talented young batsman, at the crease with 37. Warwickshire's innings was built around Nick Knight's 108 from 145 balls and was boosted by Trevor Penney who cracked 51 from 50 deliveries.
Ireland were struggling on 33 for 3 when the rain ended play against Yorkshire in Belfast. Matthew Hoggard claimed two wickets in an incisive opening burst with Tim Bresnan claiming the other wicket.
Andrew Crook led the Lancashire run-scoring spree against Buckinghamshire at Sir Paul Getty's ground in Wormsley, with an unbeaten 162 from 155 balls on his C&G Trophy debut. But it was Glen Chapple who produced the real fireworks, blasting 55 from just 16 balls as Lancashire amassed 370 for 4. James Anderson then struck twice before bad light and rain, which had also delayed the start, forced the match into a second day.
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