Hussain can’t quite fire Beds to victory

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Bedfordshire lost out to Oxfordshire in their rain-affected MCCA Unicorns T20 semi-final at Banbury on Sunday.

Put into bat, Beds got off to a terrible start, falling to 26-6 with George Thurstance (5), Charlie Thurston (8), Steffan Piolet (2), Andy Reynoldson (1), Luke Thomas (7) and Nick Lee (0) all out cheaply.

Nick Barden (17) helped add 29 for the seventh wicket with Shabz Hussain, who then went on to plunder the attack.

He scored a superb 55 not out from 35 balls with two fours and four sixes to give Beds a total to defend, finishing on 106-7 from 14 overs.

With Oxfordshire’s target revised to 97 from 12 overs, they made a steady beginning, putting on 63 for the opening wicket, before Colin Griggs dismissed Hugo Darby.

Thurstance had opener Richard Kaufman lbw for 47 and Piolet removed former Middlesex bowler Chad Keegan for one.

However, the hosts got home with three balls to spare on 97-3.