Berkshire's winning team at Wormsley
BERKSHIRE were crowned the Unicorns Counties Champions after beating Lincolnshire by 28 runs on a tense final day at the Wormsley ground on Wednesday.
It was a remarkable innings by 17-year-old man of the match Euan Woods that proved to be the difference between victory and defeat after Berkshire were struggling on 70-6 in their first innings until team ‘baby’ Woods produced a match-changing performance with an outstanding 142 not out off 176 balls as he and fellow left-hander Chris Peploe put on 146 for the seventh wicket.
Peploe's dismissal for 73 brought in Stewart Davison to join Wods and they added another 82 before Berkshire were eventually all out for 332.
Eastern Division champions Lincolnshire made a dogged 284 with Chris Peploe taking 5-101 before Berkshire’s second innings again saw lower order dig their side out of trouble with Davison making 52 and Woods 41 before tail-enders Matt Carter (23) and Tom Nugent (18 not out) took them to 237 to set Lincolnshire a target of 286 to win.
They stumbled to 125-7 by the end of the third day, but upped the resistance on Wednesday with Carl Wilson making 49 and their own Matt Carter occupying the crease for 195 minutes in making 59.
It was not until mid-afternoon that James Morris and his side sealed victory after spending seven hours 22 minutes in the fieldnwith Lincolnshire all out for 257 in 123.4 overs.
Peploe finished with 5-74 to give the spinner match figures of 10-175, but it was Woods’ match.
“Our aim now will be to retain the championship and also win the knock-out cup,” said skipper Morris. “I believe we have the ability to win both competitions and that will be the aim next season.”