The top of the table clash between Banbury and High Wycombe petered out into a tame draw at Whitepost Road on Saturday.
With both teams potentially being up for the title this year, neither wanted to lose and the tone was set for this match early on.
Winning the toss High Wycombe elected to bat first on a pitch offering some encouragement for the bowlers. Banbury’s bowling unit for the first time this season didn’t get the early breakthrough and we had to wait until the 13th over for Taylor to dismiss Sketchley (5) with the score on 44. Eyles (45) played positively and produced a 2nd wicket partnership of 61 with former High Wycombe skipper, Jason Harrison (52) before he was dismissed by John Wolstenholme. Harrison then found an ally in Greg Pooley (70) to produce the highest partnership of the match, one which yielded 76 runs.
Ollie Murray again produced a controlled spell of bowling but Launder and Taylor were uncharacteristically off form for the first time this year.
High Wycombe’s score passed the 200 mark in the 57th over and with potentially another 19 overs still to bowl, a large total seemed a certainty. However, excellent bowling by Jimmy Phillips (21ov 5mdns 71 runs 3wkts) and John Wolstenholme (20ov 1mdns 68 runs 1wkts) restricted the total to 259 for the loss of 6 wickets.
In reply, Banbury needed a positive start if they were to have any chance of reaching Wycombe’s score and the loss of Taylor (14), Sabin (15) and skipper Richard Kaufman (18), who needlessly ran himself out, effectively put a stop to the chase. With the score on 67 for 3 off 27 overs, Banbury’s tactics of preventing High Wycombe scoring any more bonus points kicked in and the score progressed to 141 for the loss of 4 wickets by the close of play. Craig Haupt was unbeaten on 42 and Danny Harding ended on 36 not out.
Banbury finished with 6 points and High Wycombe 10 points out of the match with Banbury still retaining a two point advantage in the league standings.