Last stand marks Price of failure for Knowle & Dorridge; DIVISION ONE.
Despite wickets falling regularly, the match was finely balanced going into the final 12 overs. But Steve Perryman (5-41) and Kevin Bray (3-29) swung the game K&D's way. However, last pair Husbands and Price hung on for the final six overs to deny K&D a fourth successive victory.
Meanwhile, challengers Harborne and Cannock closed the gap. Harborne destroyed lowly Evesham with a ten-wicket win thanks mainly to Amir Farooque's 1-3, and Cannock had an eight-wicket triumph over Moseley Ashfield where Logan's 4-31 and Laurie Potter's unbeaten 67 were the notable contributions.
Solihull continued to defy their early season doubters with a comfortable win over Kings Heath. Zimbabwean Andy Blignaut's 4-63 was the main reason the visitors could only manage 133, and the overseas star led the way in the run chase by adding 48 as Sol ihull cruised home by five wickets.
Another side surprising a few has been Olton. They restricted Leamington to 160, with Omar Choudry playing through the entire innings for the second successive week with an unbeaten 87. Olton were on course for victory on 65-0 and then 130-5 with ten ove rs left, but a sudden collapse saw them nine down with five overs left. The last pair of Rob Dawson and James Harms managed to survive - but only after Harms had been dropped off the last ball of the match.
Halesowen finally registered their first win of the campaign, but only after a nailbiting finish at home to Sutton Coldfield.
The home side could only manage 162 due to the efforts of Sutton skipper Jon Miller who took 7-56. It looked to have been a match-winning performance when Sutton needed four to win off two overs with two wickets left, but Alan Warner then took his fifth wicket of the match, and Paul Thomas bowled Harding with the second ball of the final over to give Halesowen a three-run victory.
Highway produced a fine performance at Worcester Norton Taverners to underline their credentials for the season ahead.
Startup's 4 for 64 held the home side back to 220 despite Donne's 67, and then the prolific pair of Dean Marsh (55) and Moin Mumtaz (56) - together with Showell's unbeaten 60 - led them home with five wickets to spare.
Bedworth remained a major contender for honours with a resounding win over Blossomfield.
Paul Smith's 135 helped them to 253 for 3, and then Warwickshire over 50s star Dennis Oakes showed he had lost none of his old magic with an outstanding spell of leg spin which brought him figures of 11-9-9-6. and gave Bedworth a 174-run win.
Droitwich won a tight contest against Water Orton by edging past the required 188 with only two wickets left.
There were also wins for Redditch and new boys Kenilworth against fellow newcomers Warwick.
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|Publication:||The Birmingham Post (England)|
|Date:||May 25, 1998|
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