CIRENCESTER seconds produced a poor batting display as they slumped to a 91-run defeat at Cheltenham thirds in Division Four of the county league.

Readers Glos CCL Div Four

Cheltenham III 165-7

Cirencester II 74 all out

Having elected to field on a rain-softened wicket, the Town suffered an immediate setback when leading batsmen Andy Cooper broke a finger attempting a difficult slip catch in the first over from Jake Holmes.

Although Alex Keane clean-bowled Cheltenham opener Pengler in his second over, home batsmen Cropper and Waters then put on 41 for the second wicket.

Jono Jamieson-Black then had Cropper caught by Holmes for 19, but Waters, anchoring the home innings, added a further 36 with Wyatt against some tight bowling before George Thrussell broke through again with wickets in his first two overs of off-spin.

A strong home batting line-up were contained well by the Town attack with the 100 only coming up in the 34th over, but a quick 30 from Mech improved the scoring rate and although Rob Lamble broke through again with two wickets in a tight spell and Dick Tugwell added a further wicket, Cheltenham were able to reach a respectable total of 165-7 off their 45 overs.

Waters came off with a dour but invaluable unbeaten 68.

Without Cooper as an experienced lynch-pin, Town made the worst possible start to their reply losing Toby Bond and Jamieson-Black in successive deliveries.

Alex Binnie and Dominic Jeffcott added 26 before two more wickets tumbled as Binnie and Lamble were both trapped leg-before by Morris and then Thrussell and Tom Rutter departed in spinner White’s first over to leave the Town floundering on 41-6.

The patient Jeffcott and Tugwell rallied the innings briefly with a stand of 27 but when Jeffcott was leg-before for 29 and Tugwell was caught, the Town subsided to 74 all out.