ON-SONG CHESHIRE SHINE TO BEAT WILTSHIRE AND MOVE TO THIRD PLACE
By Neil Goulding (Cheshire CCC Media Officer, mobile 07813 859986)


Picture Courtesy Barry Mitchell

CHESHIRE skipper Andy Hall has paid a glowing tribute to his team after they clinched a fine victory over Wiltshire in the penultimate match of the MCCA Championship season.
And with their stunning five-wicket win Cheshire moved up to third in the Western Division table.
"It was a great win for us," praised Hall. "It's been a tough season, but the lads really showed they're capable of."

However, despite victory Cheshire cannot now win the Western Division with leaders Berkshire 26 points clear at the top and only 24 points to play for.
Berkshire clung on for an important draw in their recent three-day clash with Oxfordshire at Banbury Cricket Club.
If they had not lost one more wicket and been bowled out in their second innings the title race would have been between three teams, including Cheshire.

But a draw now means that only Berkshire and Devon - who have both not lost this season - can go on to win the Western Division title.
"It's a little bit frustrating because we could have been in with an outside shot in the last game, but we've lost two games this season and you can't afford to do that if 
you've got aspirations to win the league," added Hall.
"We had high hopes of winning the Western Division, but unfortunately a couple of batting collapses have cost us this season.
"The important thing now is to finish as strongly as we can and push hard to get up to second.
"Berkshire and Devon have been really strong this season, so good luck to whoever wins the division."

Victorious in their last Western Division outing at home to Wales Minor Counties by an innings and 19 runs, Cheshire understandably went into this fixture full of confidence.
And although they lost the toss with Wiltshire opting to bat first, the visitors didn't waste any time in impressing with the ball.
Opener Jayden Levitt top-scored with a patient 102 from 214 balls for the hosts, but wickets fell at regular intervals and from 45-2 Wiltshire slumped from 130-3 to 166-6.
All-rounder Richard Logan led the way with a fine 5-68 return from 27 overs, while fellow seamer Adam Syddall (3-76) and spinner Danny Woods (3-23) from 16.5 overs 
also impressed with the ball.

In reply new opening pairing of Chris Tipper - in for the injured Warren Goodwin (broken thumb) - and Jonny Kettle starred with the willow.
Tipper fell for a quickfire 43 and Kettle 51, before left-hander Lee Dixon crashed his second Cheshire century, 109 from 118 balls to put the visitors in the driving seat.
Dixon hit three sixes and 12 fours in an imperious knock, sharing in an influential seventh wicket partnership of 105 with all-rounder Danny Berry (52 from 46 balls) as 
Cheshire declared on 381-8 from 85 overs, a healthy lead of 175.
And by making the decision to declare early after much of the first day had been lost through rain, Hall knew that any extra overs could prove vital if they were to chase 
victory on the final day. So it proved to Cheshire's advantage.

Batting for a second time Wiltshire slumped to 91-7, but a record eighth wicket stand of 214 between number eight batsman Andy Morrison and number nine Paul Robbins 
saw the hosts battled back from the brink of defeat.
Morrison finished unbeaten on 121 from 185 balls, while Robbins hit 101 from 117 balls to frustrate Cheshire as Wiltshire left their opponents needing 144 to win from 
18 overs on the final afternoon of the match.
Logan again starred with the ball for Cheshire a return of 4-107 from 21 overs giving him eight wickets for the match, while Syddall finished with six in total after another 
three-wicket haul.

Needing to score quickly Tipper got the ball rolling with an entertaining 42 from 35 balls, before vice captain James Duffy smashed 37 from just 19 balls - which included 
two fours and three sixes - to put Cheshire on track for a famous victory.
Logan finished unbeaten on 21 from 14 balls as he and Berry saw Cheshire over the winning line with 11 balls to spare.
"It was a really good run-chase from us, we went after them from ball one," reflected Hall. "We could have bowled them for around 100, but fair play to their lads lower 
down the order because they batted really well.
"But we stuck at our task well, bowled them out and gave ourselves a good chance of winning the game. It was a great effort from everyone to get that victory."
Next up for Cheshire is their final match of the season, at home to Oxfordshire at Alderley Edge Cricket Club from 21-23 August.

Scorecard (Wiltshire won the toss and batted first):
Wiltshire 1st innings: 206 all out, 81.5 overs (Levitt 102, Logan 4-68, Syddall 3-76, Woods 3-23)
Cheshire 1st innings: 381-8 dec, 85 overs (Dixon 109, Berry 52, Kettle 51, Tipper 43, Warner 3-72, Afridi 3-114)
Wiltshire 2nd innings: 318 all out, 71.5 overs (Morrison 121 not out, Robbins 101, Logan 4-107, Syddall 3-86)
Cheshire 2nd innings: 145-5, 16.1 overs (Tipper 42, Duffy 37)

Result: Cheshire beat Wiltshire by five wickets

Cheshire's team v Wiltshire: 
Andy Hall (captain, Marple)
Jonny Kettle (wicketkeeper, Nantwich)
Lee Dixon (Oxton)
James Duffy (Hyde)
Chris Tipper (Northern)
Richard Logan (Chichester)
Danny Berry (Hyde)
Adam Syddall (Urmston)
Jimmy Warrington (Nantwich)
Richard Wilkinson (Barnt Green)
Danny Woods (York)
12th man: Ollie Law (Chester Boughton Hall)
Scorer: Janet Herbert