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CRICKET: Oxford hammer Harefield to close in on title
10:00am Monday 26th August 2013 in Sport
Serious Cricket Home Counties Premier League
Oxford took a giant stride towards the Division 2 West title with an 84-run victory over Harefield at Roman Way.
With second-placed Gerrards Cross losing at Cove, Oxford are 31 points of the pack, who are now headed by Aston Rowant.
Ian Crosby’s side visit Rowant next Saturday, knowing a win will secure the title.
Andrew Clough (37) and Vishane Perera gave Oxford a good start with a stand of 53 after they were put in to bat.
But the key innings came from Jamie Perkin, who returned to form with 71 off 103 balls with eight fours.
Crosby (34) and Shamilal Mendis ensured the innings finished with a flourish as Oxford posted a challenging 230-6 from their 50 overs.
Doug King was the best Harefield bowler with 2-24.
Harefield, who needed a win to keep alive their title hopes, were never in the hunt against Oxford’s attack.
Brad Sutherland had taken the early wickets of Adam Cossins and Akshay Reddy when he was struck on the wrist as he attempted a caught and bowled from a firm drive by Zimbabwean Chamunorwa Chibhabha.
He went off to hospital for an X-ray, which showed it was just badly bruised.
Oxford’s spinners then tightened their side’s grip on the game as Harefield wickets fell at regular intervals.
Left-arm spinner Francois Vainker was the chief destroyer with 4-21 from his ten overs as Harefield were bowled out for 146.
Scores: Oxford 230-6 (50 ovs, J Perkin 71, A Clough 37, I Crosby 34), Harefield 146 (41.3 ovs, C Chibhabha 33, F Vainker 4-21). Oxford 25pts, Harefield 3.