Earley salvage draw with last ball in dramatic game against Wokingham

Berkshire Cricket League Division 2 Wokingham 6th XI (173-8) tied Earley 1st XI (173-6)

EARLEY managed to tie their match against Wokingham with the final ball of the innings with both sides finishing on 173 from 40 overs.

It looked as if eighth place Wokingham were going to shock second place Earley by taking the points, but in a gripping match Earley left it to the last ball to put the scores level.

Earley won the toss and elected to field first. It was a brilliant start to the innings for Earley as they took two Earley wickets to reduce the opening batsman for a minimal return. 

Michael Evans was caught out by Shashank Goyal, bowled Sean Vis for one run before Vis earned his second wicket to get Steve Smith out lbw, also for one run. The poor start saw Wokingham on 7-2. 

The middle order fared better for the Oaks as they begin to build on the total, despite losing Prasad Kulkarni (21) and Chinmay Kulkarni (19). 

Prabhu Selvaraj and Shiv Munniyappa formed the best partnership of the innings to take the Oaks from 50-4 to 123-5 as Salvarah eventually fell having continued a quick 46 runs from 41 balls. 

Munniyappa continued to build on the total and kept his wicket while his partners fell rapidly. Earley eventually gained the wicket of Munniyappa on 53 before Wokingham finished their 40 overs on 173-8. 

Earley started their innings in much better style than Wokingham with their opening pair frustrating the Oaks bowling attack. 

Wokingham had to be patient before they took the first wicket of the innings to remove Gary Shacklady on 23 with the score at 66-1. 

Wokingham were struggling for wickets but managed to keep the run rate down as Earley built towards the target slowly. 

With Earley on 128-5 and the overs quickly depleting, they had to increase the run rate to be within a chance of getting a result.  

The game was hanging in the balance when Sean Vis hit two boundaries and scored a quick 22 runs from 17 balls to help Earley earn a draw with the final ball of the match. 

Wokingham batting: Smith 1, Evans 1, P Kulkarni 21, C Kulkarni 19, Munniyappa 53, Selvaraj 46, Draper 1, Bhandry 12, Cary 2, Kemsley 5no, Hayter 7no. 

Earley bowling: Vis 3-16, Mapes 2-30, Lean 0-38, Shacklady 1-38, Goyal 0-14, Thompson 0-11, Lappin 1-22.

Earley batting: Aduri 47, Shacklady 23, Bye 13, Goyal 31, Kumar 13, Lean 4, Vis 22no, Lappin 5no. 

Wokingham bowling: Bhandary 0-22, Selvaraj 0-27, Draper 1-30, Munniyappa 1-30, P Kulkarni 3-31, Kemsley 1-15.

Andy Preston

Sports reporter for The Wokingham Paper. Sport Journalism graduate from the University of Brighton.

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