Shukla’s unbeaten innings inspires Oakham to victory

Cricket action - Oakham 2nds v Quorn - Oakham fielding - Dave Ramshaw bowling'Photo: MSMP040513-114js
Cricket action - Oakham 2nds v Quorn - Oakham fielding - Dave Ramshaw bowling'Photo: MSMP040513-114js

Oakham Cricket Club moved to fourth in the early-season table with their first win in the Everards Leicestershire League on Saturday.

Oakham won by six wickets at Bitteswell where Bhavin Shukla scored an excellent unbeaten 68 in a rain-affected match reduced to 36 overs per side.

Matt Osman won the toss, and with the wicket damp and green, put Bitteswell in to bat. Tight bowling restricted the early part of the innings but a late onslaught from their middle order saw them reach a competitive 185-4.

Oakham’s strong batting line-up all contributed runs in chasing the total down but the innings was built around number four Shukla, who was still there at the end as Oakham reached 189-4 – securing 21 points and 4th place in division three.

Oakham’s 2nd XI hosted Quorn 2nds in division seven and Graham Cooper had no hesitation in asking Quorn to bat after pre-match rain left the wicket damp and green.

Oakham opened with two young seam bowlers, Ed Tattersall (3-23) and Ashley Chamberlain, who quickly had Quorn in trouble at 18-3. Tattersall took two early wickets with threatening seam bowling and an unnecessary run out contributed the other wicket.

Quorn then put together a good partnership but never really got away due to tight bowling from Ryan Thwaites and Dave Ramshaw. The partnership finally ended when Tattersall returned and the batsman attempted to hook a short ball but top-edged it into his face before it looped to square leg for a catch.

R Bishop carried his bat for a fine 103no, taking his side to 184-6 but on a drying wicket and fast outfield, Oakham always felt this was within reach.

Quorn only took the one wicket with Neil Southern bowled for a rapid 59. The other two dismissals were down to erratic running between the wickets gifting Quorn two scalps.

Graham Cooper, with 65no, and new recruit Chris Hart with 30no, despite a broken finger sustained when fielding, saw Oakham to victory on 185-3 in 38 overs.