CRICKET: Park's valiant innings not enough as Dorset fall short

TOP KNOCK: Dorset skipper Chris Park

TOP KNOCK: Dorset skipper Chris Park

First published in Sport

WILTSHIRE 332 & 373-6 beat DORSET 260 & 348 by 97 runs

DORSET have now suffered back-to-back defeats at the start of their Unicorns Counties Championship campaign after falling to a 97-run loss to Wiltshire on day three at Corsham yesterday.

Chasing a formidable victory target of 446 and resuming on 20-0 at the start of the final day’s play, skipper Chris Park, pictured, led from the front as he weighed in with an undefeated 87, striking 14 fours to record his best knock for the county this season.

The captain put on a last-wicket stand of 94 with number eleven James Hayman, who in turn scored 42 off just 50 deliveries before he was bowled by Jake Roberts to give the home side the victory.

On his well-constructed knock, Park told Echosport: “I am happy with my innings but it doesn’t mean anything at the moment.

“I am there as an experienced player and we sometimes have to front up and show the others what it’s all about.

“The younger lads can watch and learn as well as bat with us in the middle.

On the contest as a whole, he added: “Throughout the three days we stayed in the game as we wanted to, but Monday evening things just got away from us a little bit.

“With the batting, we unfortunately lost a few too many wickets early in the morning session but there were a lot more positives than negatives.

“We move forward and it’s another lesson for our young batsmen.”

Commenting further on the performance, Dorset coach Alan Willows added: “The difference between ourselves and Wiltshire in this game was that they had more experience in the top order.

“My job is not to be competitive, it is to win cricket matches, and we have to start doing that.

“But I would like to congratulate the captain on a fantastic innings today, he came in when we were really struggling and played beautifully.”

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