SHERBORNE 106-7 (18pts) beat BERE REGIS 105 (4pts) by three wickets

BERE Regis lost further ground in the Dorset Premier League title race after slipping to a three-wicket defeat at Sherborne.

Brian Keegan’s men are now 61 points behind unbeaten leaders Wimborne but retain fourth place, albeit having their cushion to Sherborne in fifth cut to 19 points.

Only 211 runs were scored in this encounter at the Terrace, with 17 wickets falling.

In the end, it was Sherborne’s decision to field after winning the toss that proved crucial.

READ MORE: Wimborne beat Bere Regis by 18 runs

Bere had to grapple with a green wicket and saw Matt King and Sam Goodhew (both 1) fall cheaply.

Pete Russell (13) and Jacob Kennard (20) rebuilt grittily but their demise to Jake Elsworth brought about a collapse as Bere lost 8-54.

Teenage bowler Elsworth was the chief profiteer, taking an excellent 6-24 as Cam Robertson (10) was the only other batter to breach double figures.

Bere were hugely indebted to a generous 46 extras, plumping their score to 105 all out.

Former Somerset Seconds man Josh Lawrence showed his class with 38 from 43 balls in Sherborne’s reply, although Bere worked around the opening batter.

Matt King bowled economically, taking 1-16 from ten overs and claiming the prize wicket of Lawrence after removing fellow opener Mark Roca (6).

Sam Goodhew (3-20) and Pete Russell (1-15) also gave Bere late hope as Sherborne stuttered to 94-7 before Shane Pulling fired 22 from 29 balls to claim victory for the hosts.

Speaking to Echosport, Keegan said: “They had a lot of rain and there was indifferent bounce.

“They were 106-7 and we had our chances to take the match but we didn’t unfortunately.

“Batting-wise, it was extremely difficult first up and when you put it into context of 105 all out, 46 of those were extras.

“Jacob got a patient 20 and the only other two people that got into double figures were Pete and Cam, everybody else struggled.

“To be fair, they had a 17-year-old who took 6-24 and he was the stand-out.

“When we fielded, it wasn’t that much easier. After seeing what happened in the first innings (Lawrence) was getting down the track as much as he possibly could to whatever bowler.

“Just to negate any seam movement and bounce, it was effective. He was the only one in either side that took that approach.

“You could argue it was brave or a little stupid in certain cases, but he’s got enough talent to back it up. He batted really well.”

Bere’s loss came after a four-wicket win over Martinstown in the previous round.

In County Division Three, Bere Regis Seconds lost to Sherborne Seconds by ten runs, following a two-wicket loss at Abbotsbury one week earlier.