DORSET 228-3 (2pts) beat WALES NC 220 (70pts) by seven wickets

DORSET maintained their slim hopes of reaching the NCCA Trophy quarter-finals with a seven-wicket win over Wales National Counties at Wimborne.

Luke Webb’s charges must now beat Group Four leaders Wiltshire in their final game on Sunday (11am) to stand any chance of qualification.

Dorset came into the Wales game having lost both of their opening matches comprehensively against Cheshire and Hertfordshire.

But from the very first over they were on the pace in this contest as Wales’ decision to bat first after winning the toss backfired.

READ MORE: Hertfordshire beat Dorset by six wickets - report

Seamer Matt Burton (2-39) needed only three balls to make the breakthrough when he had Ollie Meadows (0) caught in the slips by Jacob Gordon.

Thomas Varney (1-39) then struck in the next over to remove Morgan Bevans, who nicked behind.

Wales steadied the ship through Steffan Roberts and Brad Wadlan (35) but Dorset’s spinners began to get to work.

David Scott (3-43) tore out the middle order, leaving Roberts to rebuild again. He did so with aplomb, forming a solid 72-run partnership with Tegid Phillips (27) for the sixth wicket.

When Finn Gordon (1-20) removed the latter, Roberts (100) was on the cusp of a deserved hundred having helped the visitors recover from 6-2.

And he duly brought it up with a single off Burton to widespread applause from a healthy crowd at the Leaze,

Centurion from last week, Jacob Gordon, had the last laugh though as Roberts perished two balls after reaching triple figures, stumped by Alex Eckland.

Number 11 Ben Morris crunched three fours as Wales’ tail wagged but he departed to Gordon (2-36) as Wales were dismissed for 227.

On a pitch as batting-friendly as Wimborne, Dorset were hot favourites to chase the total and so it proved.

A watchful start saw Dorset progress to 8-0 in the seventh over before Jacob Gordon (6) was pinned lbw by Adam Sylvester (1-38).

It was largely plain sailing afterwards, as Dorset controlled the required run rate.

Webb scored 42 as Dorset kicked on to 80-1 in the 21st over before their skipper was bowled by Alex Russell (1-37).

Conditions still lied in Dorset’s favour as Scott (53) cruised to a half-century before the hosts accelerated.

Scott’s demise to Phillips (1-41) brought Alex Eckland to the crease and he stroked a quickfire 53 not out from 43 balls to bring Dorset to the winning line, along with a mature 63 not out from Finn Gordon.