ALREADY handicapped by the unavailability of captain Russell Rowe, the cancellation of the Shrewton's first team game saw the arrival of many of their top players at Berwick to represent their third 11 against the previously undefeated Winterslow.

A damp day meant play was delayed, but stand-in skipper Pete Pearce was amazed when opposite number James Miles won the toss and elected to bat first, playing right into the hands of the Winterslow bowlers.

With the new ball and a damp wicket, the league's top attack were in their element.

Chris Steedon bowled a superb spell of nine overs, one for 14, including the crucial wicket of Stuart Cruse, bowled for just six.

Opening partner Mark Penny bowled his 12 overs straight through claiming two wickets, with Pearce also taking two in a tidy spell.

But it was Des Willis, 3-18, who took the bowling honours.

The fielding was also of an excellent standard - debutant Jason Boyce ran out Shrewton's first team skipper Richard Barnett with a direct hit from the boundary for 50, while Lenny Gordon's brilliant diving effort at point, only inches from the ground, saw him record his first catch of the season.

Shrewton's innings closed on 92, which although under par could have proved a test for Win-terslow on a wicket that was already damp and subjected to a further shower at tea.

Winterslow's target was reduced to 88 from 38 overs due to the downpour.

Opening pair Chris Stone and Andy Howton paved the way to victory with a steady if, a little lucky partnership of 41 in ten overs.

Not playing at his best, and receiving a couple of reprieves, Stone top-scored with 34 and decent contributions from Andy Howton, Mark Melhorn and Steedon saw Winterslow home just past the 20 over mark.

Despite not being at full strength and against stronger opposition, Winterslow still managed to dominate proceedings and pick up maximum points.

Stand-in skipper Pearce said: "With Russell missing and no regular keeper it was up to us all to raise our performance. When their first team players turned up it just made us more determined.

Vice-captain Steedon added: "I am delighted with the result.

"I've played a few games for Shrewton in the past as indeed has Russell, so to get one over our old friends was great.

"I particularly enjoyed knocking over Stuart Cruse as he can be a very influential player."