06:30PM, Friday 09 August 2019
An unbeaten 91 from Oliver Price helped Oxford ease to a five-wicket victory over Cookham Dean on Saturday.
The result against the Home Counties Division 2 leaders was not an unsurprising one, but Dean remain in the bottom two, 15 points adrift from safety, with matches quickly running out.
Openers Patrick Castleden (14) and Ben Millar (11) got Dean off to a quick start against some loose bowling, but Oxford soon sharpened up and both fell in quick succession, leaving Sohil Mangat (19) and Yash Rastogi (19) with the task of rebuilding the innings.
Both made starts but failed to build on their scores, falling to the impressive Shamilal Mendis (5-29). Yash Qureshi was Dean’s main contributor with the bat, making 60 runs before the visitors were bowled out for 187.
In reply the Oxford openers rode their luck with the new ball seaming about.
Sahan Nanayakkara (4-56) was introduced and he picked up the wicket of Harvey Eltham for 20. With Oxford on 80-2 Nanayakkara struck twice in the last over before tea to turn momentum back in Dean’s favour, however, Price thwarted any chance of victory on his way to a chanceless 91 not out.
Reflecting on the loss, Patrick Castleden, said “The Oxford opening batsmen came out with a really positive intent and got a bit of luck with edges evading fielders but to their credit they made the most of it.
"With a good start with the bat it is always going to be difficult to defend a low total. Looking forward we still have to play all the other teams around us in the table so we have a great opportunity to move up the table.”
Cookham Dean face bottom of the table Dinton on Saturday at Whytelaydes Lane in a must-win clash for the home side.
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