'M' beat 'E/F' by 9 wickets
The 'M' XI cruised into the quarter finals thanks to a 9 wicket win over the combined 'E/F' team. Ed Ellis top scored for the EFs but could only watch from the other end as Matt Metcalfe and Steve Malone ripped through the top order. Natal leg spinner Richard McGlashan then cleaned up the tail as the EFs were bowled out for just 80. Hampshire openers Sean Morris and Tony Middleton made light work of the chase, with only Ed Freeman claiming a wicket, that of Morris caught at fine leg off a top edge. A disappointed Freeman said later, "why did you have to make it a nine wicket 'thrashing'? You could have said we put up a brave fight and lost by a couple of wickets". Unfortunately Edward, this is a 'virtual' tournament, not a fantasy.

'N/O/Q' beat 'R' by 66 runs
Designated NOQ captain Billy Quigley won an important toss and decided to bat first and saw his team rattle up 245 for 8 with runs fairly evenly spread around the team. Chris Noble then bowled a typically frugal 10 over spell, taking 2-30, and although Sam Raphael and Morgan Rushbrook briefly threatened to turn the tide of the match, Craig O'Shannessey's four wicket burst wrapped up the match for the NOQs as the R's were dismissed for 179. Highlight of the match was unquestionably the moment the R team's veteran number eleven Geoff Renshaw hooked O'Shannessey into the graveyard.

'A' beat 'G' by 60 runs. 
A splendid 59 from Hampshire's Cecil Abercrombie helped the A's to 195 all out with Dan Goldstraw taking four wickets. After tea, Steve Andrew and Ben Ashkenazi took early wickets and only Stuart Gillett (35) showed any real resistance as the G's were bowled out for 135.

'T' beat 'B' by 6 wickets
Peter Tapper marked his return to the Sports Ground with a typically ferocious 60 not out as the 'T' XI eased past the 'B' team by six wickets. Captain Trestrail's decision to invite the B's to bat first paid off as seamers Martin Thursfield and Chris Thomason grabbed early wickets. Peter Barrett's 55 helped the B's to 190 but this never looked likely to be enough as T openers Glyn Treagus and Paul Taylor added 50 for the first wicket. Simon Beetham and Will Buck briefly threatened a comeback with two wickets each but Tapper's cameo wrapped up the victory for the T's with plenty of overs to spare.

'S' beat 'C' by 3 wickets
This clash of the heavyweights featured no less than eight players from the Southern Hemisphere, including Aussie Test bowler Simon Cook. Captaining the 'S' team, Sydney-based Tim Smith opted to field first and would've been happy with restricting the C's to 231 all out. Damian Shirazi and Max Smith bravely saw off Cook's opening burst before the former fell for 55 in controversial circumstances. Ryan Scott and Gareth Shreuder continued the good work before some trademark big hitting from Peter Smith saw the S's home with plenty of overs to spare.

'H' beat 'I/J' by 185 runs
A battling century from former New Zealand Test opener Andrew Jones wasn't enough to save the I/J XI from a comprehensive defeat by a strong 'H' team. The H's took full advantage of Tony Jenkin's brave decision to ask them to bat first, rattling up a massive 370-5 with Jones's former teammate Jon Hardy smashing a sensational 150. Spinners Rob Howarth and Aaron Heal then both took three wickets as the IJ's fell well short. The victory came at a price for the H's with Marty Hunt tweaking a muscle and now a fitness doubt for the quarter finals.

'U-Z' beat 'L' by 5 wickets
Our penultimate first round tie saw the U-Z side defeat the L's in a match dominated by Africans. Two Zimbabweans, Richard Lock and Malcolm Lake, gave the L's a good start but South African Peter Williams made inroads before spinners Don Whitlock and Terrence Walsh turned the screw. It was only a classy 40 from John Lawson that enabled the L's to reach a semi-respectable 179 at tea. Guy Layman removed Tony Wharton early on but wickets were hard to come by thereafter as another South African, Grant van Heerden, dominated proceedings, scoring 70 not out as the U-W's romped home by five wickets.

'P' beat 'D' by 110 runs
The 'P' XI  proved to be too strong for the D's, romping home to a 110 run win in the final last 16 tie. Derek Pepperell (67), Dan Peacock (75) and Clive Plant (43) all figured strongly as the P's totalled 260. Calvin Dickinosn and Bryn Darbyshire gave the D's a flying start with 34 and 48 respectively but fell away badly and were dismissed for 150 with Dick Page taking 3-40 and Phil Pineo 2-45.

Meanwhile, concerns have been raised by Colin Cooper about the overuse of the Sports Ground. "We've had five matches yesterday and another five today" he said. "I'm running out of white paint and the wheel on my wheelbarrow's about to fall off" he moaned.


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