ASTWOOD BANK saw off local rivals Redditch with a four-wicket victory in Saturday’s Worcestershire League Regional Premier Division Cup group B opener at Bromsgrove Road.
Bank’s Joel Haslam bagged 3-43 including the key wicket of Kingfishers skipper Russell Southwick leg before for 21 to help restrict the hosts to 147 all out off 37.3 overs in the 40-over contest.
Tom Harris chipped in with two wickets for Bank, including that of Redditch top-scorer Rizwan Mohammed for 34, as the hosts struggled to build any momentum.
In reply, despite three wickets for Ghulam Moyhuddin, the visitors scored at a brisk rate throughout and were always on course to reach their target, which they did on 150-6 off just 25 overs as Sam Thomas made 39 and Tom Underhill 30.
Due to the loss of more than half of the season, the structure of the county league has changed to a number of regional group-based competitions rather than its normal divisional make-up.
The Cup competition will be the number one prize this season. This competition features 24 teams who originally made up the Premier Division and Division One divided into four regional groups of six.
The Trophy competition is structured the same way as the cup and an unbeaten 99 from Adam Warbrick guided Astwood Bank 2nds to a fine four-wicket group B win at Bromsgrove despite 100 from former Redditch all-rounder Greg Chinn in the hosts’ 240-8.
Redditch 2nds shared the spoils at Avoncroft in group B as Dan Protherough’s 5-27 – including the the key wicket of home opener Dan Elliott (106) – sparked a batting collapse as the the hosts lost the last eight wickets for just 33 runs to finish tied on 210 when it seemed victory was well within their reach.