Spinners get Banbury off to a winning start

OXFORD MAIL: Banbury spun their way to a six-wicket victory over Welwyn Garden City to get their Division 1 campaign off to a flier.

Spinners Jimmy Phillips and Luke Ryan each took four wickets as the hosts bowled Welwyn all out for 172 after asking them to bat first.

After new seamer Luke Radford had taken the first two wickets, off-spinner Phillips (4-74) and the more niggardly Ryan (4-34) captured the last eight wickets for 61 runs in match shortened by overnight rain to 86 overs.

Welwyn, for whom former Oxon all-rounder Jamie Hewitt scored a half-century, were dismissed one over short of their allocation.

The target of 173 in 40 overs, always seemed comfortably in Banbury’s reach once the in-form opener Nathan Hawkes had rattled up a typically rapid 58.

His good work was carried on by Craig Haupt, with an unbeaten 58, who shared a third-wicket stand of 64 with Shahbaz Ali.

The fall of two cheap wickets to James Southgame near the end could not stop Banbury getting home with 16 balls to spare.

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