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Kingfisher Beer Cup gets under way

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Summer might not be around the corner just yet but the rain relented long enough to allow several Kingfisher Beer Cup first-round matches to be completed over the bank holiday weekend, with a few surprise results being thrown up.

The main shock was 2009 champions Chester-Le-Street CC being knocked out by Richmondshire CC of the North Yorkshire & South Durham League by 13 runs. Having decided to bat first, Richmondshire scored 161 for six from 45 overs. In reply, Chester-Le-Street struggled and were dismissed for 148 thanks, in part, to a hat-trick from Bradley Elsworth. The Yorkshire side were rewarded with a home match against Blaydon CC in round two.

A heavily-weakened Hyde CC side travelled to Bramhall CC, and it was the home side that progressed at the expense of the ECB National Club t20 2011 finalists. Bramhall batted first and compiled 211 for nine thanks to Matthew Jamieson’s 92. Hyde, who were bowled out for 124, struggled in reply as all six Bramhall bowlers took wickets.

Warren Nel of Papplewick & Linby CC was the top-scorer of the weekend, hitting an impressive 137 not out to guide his side to a one-wicket victory over Treeton CC. At 165 for nine, Nel was joined by number 11 Dane Straw. Fifty runs were still required but the duo stuck around, frustrating the home bowlers to reach their target of 215 with two and a half overs to spare.

Opener James Keightley was in the runs as Teddington CC dominated Ickenham CC from start to finish. After being put into bat, Keightley scored an unbeaten 122 in a total of 277 for four. Another Keightley, David, then took 5-11 from seven overs as Ickenham were dismissed for just 86.

There were two centuries at High Wycombe CC as James Benning’s 101 was the highlight of an outstanding total of 377 for seven. In reply, Amersham CC were always struggling to keep up with the required run rate despite an impressive 109 not out from opener Joe Shuttle; they reached 190 for nine.

The best bowling effort came from Mark Hale of New Brighton CC - from the Liverpool & District Competition League - who took impressive figures of 7-18. Alder CC scored just 61 and New Brighton reached their target inside eight overs for an early finish.

Another impressive bowling display came from Matt Smith of Beverley CC in their loss against Harrogate CC, though his 6-56 was not enough as Harrogate scored 247. Beverley fell short in their chase with 185.

Martin Weightman’s 6-25 for Clifton Village helped secure a comfortable 10-wicket victory against Swarkestone CC.

Shrewsbury CC, last year’s champions, had a short trip to Stafford CC, where they won by nine wickets; Eliot Green claimed 5-5 from 2.4 overs to dismiss the hosts for just 75. Shrewsbury chased that down in less than 10 overs.

The 2011 runners-up, Cambridge Granta, will try again next weekend after their match against Peterborough Town was postponed for a second time.

The remaining games have been rescheduled for Sunday, May 13. Some second-round matches will be played on the same day.