By Neil Goulding

DESPITE a brave run chase Cheshire A slipped to a 39 runs defeat away to the Durham Academy at Gateshead Fell Cricket Club.
The county second-string needed 241 to win on the second and final day's play, but fell short in an exciting run chase.
Having lost the toss, Cheshire were asked to bowl on the opening day and struggled to restrict their opponents as they posted a respectable 301-8 declared in 64.5 overs.
Off-spinner Daniel Berry was the pick of Cheshire's bowlers with a fine 5-64 return.
In reply the hosts struggled to 143-6 overnight having been 99-6 at one stage.
On the second day Cheshire added a further 61 runs for the loss of three more wickets before declaring on 204-9 from 67 overs, 97 runs behind their hosts.
Timperley batsman Tom Twiney top-scored with 49, Macclesfield's Craig Melrose hit an useful unbeaten 28, with Oxton's Marc Rowlands (24) and Hyde's Berry (23) also in the runs.
Batting for a second time the Durham Academy declared on 144-7 from 43 overs, a lead of 240.
Rowlands impressed with the ball with a 4-61 return, while seamer Melrose finished with 2-7 from seven tight overs.
In reply Cheshire lost wickets at regular intervals and, despite runs from Widnes batsman Shaun Moore (24), Oxton's Chris Davies (37) - skipper for the match - and Melrose (24 not out), fell short in their chase.

Cheshire A's next match is at home to the Northumberland Development XI (16-17 July) @ Mobberley Cricket Club. Free admission for spectators.


Durham Academy 1st innings: 301-8 dec, 64.5 overs (Berry 5-64)

Cheshire 1st innings: 204-9 dec, 67 overs (Twiney 49, Melrose 28 not out, Rowlands 24, Berry 23)