SOUTH Wilts made a disappointing start to their pre-league season programme when they suffered a six-wicket defeat to Corsham at Bemerton.
They began confidently enough with a half-century opening partnership between Tom Morton (33) and Eddie Abel (24), but Jack Mynott, James Hayward and Rob Pittman all bagged ducks as the innings fell apart.
Fielding seven of last season’s Southern Electric Premier League championship winning side, South Wilts dropped to 95-6 before Ron Franklin (42) and teenager Harry Hawkins, pictured, (42) gave the innings some stability.
They raised the total to 187 – a target Wiltshire’s Michael Coles simply blew away, almost single-handedly.
Coles blazed six sixes and five fours in a blistering 93, scored off 76 balls, as Corsham raced to victory with nine overs to spare.
South Wilts host Bournemouth at Bemerton on Saturday (1pm).
The seconds, who entertain Calmore Sports at the academy ground on Saturday, were also beaten, but gave a good account of themselves as they lost by only four runs chasing Corsham’s 219, having been 40-4 at one stage.
Little Ben Draper made 45, Tom Pearce 35 and new signing Matt Cutts, from Winterslow, a brisk 40 near the end.
“All in all it was a good workout,” said skipper Tom Pearce.
n James Hayward, Tom Morton and Steve Warner have been named in Wiltshire’s squad for their final warm-up match against Dorset at South Wilts on Easter Monday (11am).
The county team will approach the match in good spirits after retaining the Marlborough Cup on Sunday with a 58-run victory over Berkshire.