After recent batting collapses, Oxford captain Ian Crosby urged his side to stand up and be counted ahead of their Serious Cricket Home Counties League Division 1 clash at Slough on Saturday.
Oxford seemed to be heading down the same road when losing four wickets for 42 after being put in to bat.
But it was Crosby himself, along with Jamie Perkin, who stood up and turned a potential batting crisis into their highest score of the season Crosby (91) and Perkin (82) added 158 for the fifth wicket and further support down the order saw them reach a massive 299-7.
It was not enough to secure a victory as Slough battled to a draw at 216-7, but the fighting display will have done wonders for Oxford’s confidence.
Things looked very different after the first hour.
Slough seamer Raja Nawaz knocked over the first four Oxford batsmen – including Stewart Laudat – in no time at all, to leave the visitors in big trouble.
But Perkin and Crosby went on the offensive and wrested the initiative from the Slough bowlers.
Perkin’s 82 came off 125 balls with ten fours, while the more aggressive Crosby took only 101 balls for his innings, which contained 14 fours.
Both departed within seven runs of each other.
But their lead was taken up by John Barrett with a run-a-ball unbeaten 53 and Mark Beer, who scored 38 not out from 46 deliveries.
Nawaz finished with damaged figures of 4-80 from 17 overs.
Beer then struck two early blows at the start of the Slough reply, dismissing Waqas Hussain and Shahid Yousaf.
When Geyhas Khan fell to Freddie Simon to make it 65-3, Oxford had hopes of forcing a victory.
But Nabil Shah’s rapid half-century, and good supporting innings from Feroz Baig and Bobby Sher kept Oxford at bay before they both fell to Shami Mendis.
Slough never looked like getting close, but secured a draw thanks to an unbroken eighth-wicket stand of 33.
Beer took 3-75 from 13 overs for Oxford, who were the happier team at the end of the match.
Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone’s contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.
Latest Sport news
6:00am Monday 22nd December 2014
For the second time this season London Welsh found themselves on the end of an 11-try mauling, and head coach Justin Burnell conceded it was a very tricky afternoon for the Exiles.
8:21pm Sunday 21st December 2014
London Welsh crashed to their heaviest defeat in an already disastrous Aviva Premiership season when they conceded 11 tries in a 78-7 loss to a star-studded Saracens at Allianz Park on Saturday.
5:37pm Saturday 20th December 2014
5:00pm Saturday 20th December 2014
DANNY Hylton ended his barren run in front of goal as Oxford United came from behind to earn a point against Hartlepool United.
1:57pm Saturday 20th December 2014
All the news from Oxford United's Sky Bet League Two clash at Hartlepool United.
9:30am Saturday 20th December 2014
Andy Whing says Oxford United should expect to beat Hartlepool United this afternoon despite the Football League’s bottom club appointing a new manager this week.
8:30am Saturday 20th December 2014
Michael Appleton’s main selection decision for Oxford United today is picking who leads the line against Hartlepool.
8:10am Saturday 20th December 2014
LONDON Welsh replacement hooker Nathan Morris is looking forward to the opportunity to test himself against some of the best in the game when they travel to Saracens today, writes MATTHEW BRUCE.
8:10am Saturday 20th December 2014
Forum A and Holton A kept up their battle for the Division 1 crown, as they both hit an incredible 32 points apiece in the latest round of matches.
8:00am Saturday 20th December 2014
Banbury BC lightweight Ashley Banks was crowned England junior novice champion after a unanimous points win against Rahul Gondalia (Karmand BC, Bradford) in the final.