WILTSHIRE were forced to endure an unwelcome reunion with defeat last weekend as their Unicorns Knockout Trophy run came to an end in the semi-finals.
The county side, who had won ten matches in a row going into Sunday’s clash, fell to a disappointing 105-run reverse at the hands of Oxfordshire as they failed to construct a successful run chase in Bicester.
Wiltshire captain Mike Coles had no qualms with the result and was happy to admit that Oxfordshire deserved to book their place in the final against Devon.
“I can’t argue with the result at all. We were outplayed on the day and deserved to lose,” said Coles.
“We got off to a great start with the bat and were 115-2 after 14 overs – we had more than enough overs to chase down the score but somehow, we just started losing wickets.
“We didn’t apply ourselves properly and we just didn’t do what we have been doing all season. We needed Ed Young or Henry Langford to stay in there and anchor the innings but that didn’t happen.
“We’ve been on a brilliant run but it was always going to come to an end at some point. We’ve got to try and move on as soon as we can.”
Oxfordshire batted first after winning the toss and Jonny Cater hit an unbeaten 101 from 94 deliveries.
Opener Hugo Darby chipped in with 45 while Nathan Hawkes added 35 and despite Jake Roberts and Coles taking two wickets apiece, the hosts posted 263-8.
Young (46) and Langford (45) put Wiltshire in a commanding early position following the dismissals of openers Jayden Levitt and Tom Morton but Coles (16) and Adam Miles (12) were the only other batsmen to reach double figures.
Oxfordshire’s Luke Ryan (3-12) and John West (3-22) then got to work with the ball as Wiltshire were all out for 158 in the 39th over.
Wiltshire’s top-of-the-table Unicorns County Championship Western Division clash with second-placed Devon at Devizes, starts on Sunday (11am).
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