CRICKET: Oxford crash after shattering collapse

Oxford’s Mark Beer (above) is trapped lbw when trying to sweep Adam Dobb

Oxford’s Mark Beer (above) is trapped lbw when trying to sweep Adam Dobb

First published in Sport

Oxford lost seven wickets for just one run in an extraordinary collapse at home Serious Cricket Home Counties Premier League Division 1 leaders High Wycombe on Saturday.

The hosts slipped from 14-0 to an ignominious 15-7 and seemed in danger of being bowled out for the lowest total in the league’s history.

That record is held by Bicester & North Oxford, who were dismissed for 25 by Farnham Common in 2006.

But the tail wagged and lifted the hosts to 98 all out.

Wycombe themselves struggled to 33-4, before easing to a six-wicket success.

There was no hint of the disaters to come when Oxford chose to bat first in sunny conditions.

Openers Brad Sutherland and Vishane Perea put on 14 before the latter fell to George Harper.

Former Surrey player Jamie Benning ripped through the top of the order, taking five wickets for no runs in three overs.

Andrew Clough went first ball as did skipper Ian Crosby, while there were also ducks for Dan Bowyer and Jasper Davies.

Without Stewart Laudat, who rescued them from dire straits in their unlikely victory over Tring Park the previous week, Oxford’s batting looks very fragile.

Shamilal Mendis and Mark Beer spared some of their blushes with an eighth-wicket stand of 49.

Beer fell for 19, while Mendis was last out for 56 off 83 balls with eight fours, as Oxford just failed to reach three figures Benning returned 5-30 from 13 of the 40.1 overs the innings lasted.

Beer, the previous week’s bowling hero gave Oxford a glimmer of hope by taking two of the wickets as Wyc-ombe slipped to 33-4 in reply.

But any thoughts of another miraculous win were dashed as Benning (37no) and skipper Matt Eyles (33no) steered the leaders to victory.

Brian Howard's future at Oxford United up in the air

Oxford Mail:

2:00pm Friday 19th December 2014

BRIAN Howard’s situation at Oxford United is unclear after head coach Michael Appleton admitted he did not know whether the midfielder would be offered an extension to his short-term contract.

Piri Weepu returns to London Welsh starting line, but will play at fly half

Oxford Mail: London Welsh are staying at the Kassam

12:33pm Friday 19th December 2014

PIRI Weepu returns to the London Welsh starting line-up for tomorrow's Aviva Premiership fixture with Saracens at Allianz Park (KO 3pm).

Ashby's Oxford United debut is a matter of timing - Appleton

Oxford Mail:

12:00pm Friday 19th December 2014

JOSH Ashby is good enough to play in Oxford United’s side right now, but the teenager knows his time will come, according to head coach Michael Appleton.

Worried Hartlepool boss compares Oxford United to Real Madrid after scouting trip

Oxford Mail:

9:40am Friday 19th December 2014

RONNIE Moore is braced for a tough first game in charge of Hartlepool United after comparing opponents Oxford United to Real Madrid.

Oxford United striker John Campbell is keen to make his mark at Hartlepool

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Friday 19th December 2014

John Campbell admits it would be difficult to keep his kit on if he was able to make an impact on debut for Oxford United tomorrow.

Interactive match preview: Appleton and Hylton on goals; Moore likens United to Real Madrid; Howard's future; Ashby; club stalwart departs + video

Oxford Mail:

9:34am Friday 19th December 2014

Get ready for kick-off with our interactive preview of Oxford United's trip to Hartlepool

Barren run in front of goal not affecting Oxford United's top scorer

Oxford Mail:

9:10am Friday 19th December 2014

THERE were times earlier this season when it felt like Danny Hylton was scoring in every game, but Oxford United’s top scorer is not getting weighed down by a sudden barren run in front of goal.

Appleton puts faith in his poachers to improve Oxford United's goal return

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Friday 19th December 2014

FINDING a predator to turn dominance into goals has been an Achilles’ heel for Oxford United this season, but Michael Appleton is hopeful two candidates will emerge over the festive period.

Oxford United lay on three free supporter coaches for Hartlepool trip

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Friday 19th December 2014

ABOUT 150 supporters have taken advantage of Oxford United’s offer of free transport to tomorrow’s game at Hartlepool United.

FOOTBALL: North Leigh boss Mark Gee is wary of Wantage threat

Oxford Mail: North Leigh boss Mark Gee is confident his side will be stronger next season

7:30am Friday 19th December 2014

North Leigh boss Mark Gee admitted he is ‘wary’ of struggling Wantage Town as his side travel to Alfredian Park in Division 1 South & West of the Evo-Stik Southern League tomorrow, writes Matthew Bruce.

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