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Curnow lays down the gauntlet

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Neil Curnow’s half-century ensured Cornwall set Buckinghamshire a difficult victory target on the penultimate day of an intriguing Minor Counties Championship final.

Cornwall’s number six was yet to get off the mark when he started the morning session and his team were in danger of suffering a second-innings collapse at 59 for four.

Just two runs were added before Taylor Williams was dismissed, but Curnow, who was eventually dismissed for 53, and Christopher Hunkin, who made 45 after top-scoring in the first innings with 77, helped Cornwall to 209 all out.

Shaftab Khalid again shone with the ball for Buckinghamshire, once more accounting for a trio of victims in figures of 3-52 while Faisal Ahmed took 3-41.

Buckinghamshire were set a target of 262 to win and stuttered to 18 for two in their reply, with Alex Morgan and Mal Loye both departing having scored three.

Fahim Qureshi eventually fell too, but Michael Payne and David Cranfield-Thompson guided Bucks to 93 for three at the close, with another 169 runs required.