CHESHIRE CRUSH WALES BY AN INNINGS
By Neil Goulding (Cheshire CCC Media Officer, mobile 07813 859986)

Pictured: Cheshire spinner Danny Woods, who had match figures 7-68 in the innings victory over Wales (Photo courtesy of Derrick Hastings)

Cheshire took less than two days to crush Wales by an innings and 19 runs in their MCCA Championship match at Nantwich.

Without unavailable long-time skipper Andy Hall, who was replaced by debutant Ollie Law, Cheshire never looked back after posting a formidable 405 for 9 in their 90 overs on the first day.

The innings was underpinned by a superb century from Warren Goodwin (107). He put on 69 for the second wicket with Richard Wilkinson (26) and 101 for the third wicket with Lee Dixon (25).

Dixon went on to make 75 and added a further 78 runs for the fourth wicket with stand-in skipper James Duffy (46).

There were also useful contributions down the order from Richard Logan (38) and Jimmy Warrington (25 not out) as Cheshire piled on the agony for the men from the principality.

Already weakened by the loss of Dion Holden, who could not bat, Wales then suffered at the hands of left arm seamer Adam Syddall.

He claimed two early scalps to leave the visitors precariously placed at 64 for 3 at the end of the first day.

Syddall carried on in the same vein on day two, finishing with 4 for 65, as Wales collapsed to 159 all out, 246 runs in arrears. He was ably supported by Richard Logan and Danny Woods with two wickets apiece.

Skipper Duffy enforced the follow on and Wales were soon in trouble again as Logan dispatched openers Rhodri Evans and Tim Baker with just eight runs on the board.

They did, however, make a better fist of their second innings, mainly thanks to a superb century from Sam Davies (108). He received some good support from Andrew Salter (32) in a partnership of 86 for sixth wicket, which briefly delayed the inevitable in the afternoon sun.

Left arm spinner Danny Woods claimed the wickets of both Davies and Salter and a further three to finish with the excellent figures of 5 for 53 from 15 overs and match figures of 7 for 68.

Jimmy Warrington also added two scalps to the one he took in the first innings as Wales were bowled out for 227 in their second innings shortly after tea on the second day.

Duffy was delighted with his players after his first game in charge: “It was great to put such a big score on the board on the first day,” he said. “Warren (Goodwin) and Lee (Dixon) batted beautifully, and there were good contributions all down the order.”

“Adam (Syddall) bowled particularly well on the first evening, Richard (Logan) made his usual contribution and Jimmy Warrington chipped in with a few, but Danny (Woods) was magnificent. He kept plugging away and got his just rewards.”

Despite this convincing victory, news from elsewhere was not good for Cheshire’s chances of reaching the MCCA Championship final, as Western Division leaders Berkshire scored an impressive innings and 44 run victory over Herefordshire at Finchampstead and are still 40 points ahead of Cheshire with two championship matches left to play.

Scorecard (Cheshire won the toss and batted first):

Cheshire 1st innings: 405-9, 90 overs (Goodwin 107, Dixon 73, Duffy 45, Logan 38, O’Shea 3-83)

Wales 1st innings: 159 all out, 49 overs (Baker 35*, Syddall 4-65, Woods 2-15, Logan 2-41)

Wales 2nd innings: 227 all out, 50.3 overs (Davies 108, Salter 32, Woods 5-53, Warrington 2-40, Logan 2-48)

Result: Cheshire (24pts) beat Wales (0pts) by an innings and 19 runs

CONVINCING CHESHIRE WIN ONLY HOPE

By Neil Goulding (Cheshire CCC Media Officer, mobile 07813 859986)

Pictured: Cheshire debutant Ollie Law

Cheshire take on Wales at Nantwich in the MCCA Championship starting on Sunday 24th July knowing that their only hope of staying in the title race is to record a convincing victory.

Having opened the season with an impressive win away to Herefordshire, their title chances have been dented by two disappointing defeats, at Chester against Cornwall and Devon in Torquay.

On both occasions it was Cheshire’s batting that let them down, as they failed to set challenging totals in the fourth innings.

It has left them with a mountain to climb as they now lie 24 points adrift of Devon in second place and a further 16 points behind top of the table Berkshire, who are the only team in the Western Division to have won all three of their games.

A major blow for Cheshire is that Andrew Hall, for whom 2011 will be his last as the team’s skipper after 10 years in charge, is unavailable.

James Duffy takes over as captain and knows what Hall's absence means to the county.

“Andy’s unavailability is obviously a disappointment for us because he’s been an inspirational leader and a prolific run-scorer,” he said. “But I’m looking forward to the challenge, and we've brought in a very promising player in Ollie Law as Andy’s replacement.”

Chester Boughton Hall’s Law, who has been in outstanding form for his club this season, will be making his debut for the county.

Wales, Cheshire’s opponents at Nantwich, have failed to win any of their three games and prop up the Western Division, but Duffy is wary of being complacent.

“Wales may be bottom of the division but we know they are a difficult team to beat,” he said. “They have some very good players and, on their day, can beat anyone.”

On the position Cheshire find themselves, he commented: “The two defeats have cost us dearly, but whilst it’s still mathematically possible to win the championship, we will be going all out to do so.”

Apart from the inclusion of Law for Hall, the rest of the team is unchanged from the Devon game and is as follows:

Warren Goodwin - Chester Boughton Hall
Jonny Kettle (W/k) - Nantwich
James Duffy (Capt) - Hyde
Richard Wilkinson - Barnt Green
Lee Dixon - Oxton
Danny Berry - Hyde
Ollie Law - Chester Boughton Hall
Richard Logan - Chichester
Adam Syddall - Urmston
Danny Woods - York
Jimmy Warrington - Nantwich
Ross Dixon - Oxton (12th man)
Scorer:- Jim Law

For any photos of the Cheshire team please call Neil Goulding on 07813 859986. These can happily be supplied free of charge.

Or alternatively contact Barry Mitchell www.sport-in-focus.com for official Cheshire photos.