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Clubs braced for wet weekend

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With the continued inclement weather, clubs are hoping to avoid the rain for long enough to complete their first round matches in the Kingfisher Beer Cup this weekend.

The majority of matches are happening on Sunday and this is the first step that over 250 teams will make during their attempt to reach the final at Derbyshire's County Ground in September.

Last year's winners Shrewsbury begin their quest to retain the title with a relatively short trip to North Staffordshire & South Cheshire League side Stafford, while the 2011 runners up, Cambridge Granta, will host competition newcomers Peterborough Town from the Northamptonshire Premier League.

The 2010 champions, South Northumberland, find themselves hosting fellow North East Premier League side Stockton while current National Club Twenty20 title holders Ealing will travel to Middlesex County League side Shepherds Bush.

Ed Foster

Shrewsbury captain Ed Foster is hoping to defend the Kingfisher Beer Cup which they won at Derbyshire's County Ground

With clubs allowed to move their first round matches earlier in the season if they wish, four matches have beaten the wet weather.

The first match of this year's competition took place in the north west where Clifton of the Central Lancashire League produced an impressive performance against Carnforth from the Northern Premier League.

Clifton batted first and put on 214 for four from their 45 overs, helped by Dean Morris’ 71 not out and Adam Holt's 61. Morris was a success with the ball as well with figures of 5-20 as Carnforth were bowled out for 103.

Blackrod from Bolton & District League put out Urmston of the Cheshire County Premier League thanks to Saif Bhojani’s unbeaten 112 in Blackrod’s total of 226 for two, Urmston reaching 173 for three in reply.

Little Lever from the Bolton League hosted Prestwich of the Lancashire County League in a closely fought contest. Little Lever put Prestwich into bat and they scored 173 for seven in their 45 overs, Sam Holden top scoring with 53. Little Lever's reply fell just short, being bowled out for 167.

The final match to be completed so far saw Audley of the North Staffordshire & South Cheshire League travel to Wallasey from the Liverpool & District League in what proved to be a quickly completed match.

Audley chose to bat first but were skittled out for just 57 in less than 24 overs thanks to opening bowler John Murphy with figures of 5-21 from eight overs. In reply Wallasey reached their target with the loss of two wickets in 23 overs to reach round two.

If matches are postponed they will be replayed by Monday 7th May with the next round scheduled for the following Sunday.