Berkshire were sent spinning to a four-wicket defeat by Oxfordshire in the second of their four group games in the NCCA Trophy at Falkland CC on Sunday.
The holders slumped from 81-3 to 114 all out with all-rounder James Coles claiming sensational figures of 5-6 with his left-arm spin.
Berkshire then looked to their slow bowlers, who included NCCA debutants Rhys Lewis (Wargrave) and Eastcote’s Shaariq Sheikh, but they managed to take only six wickets before the visitors reached their target.
Coles recently signed a professional contract with Sussex, having become their youngest first-class debutant last year at the age of 16.
Skipper Richard Morris top-scored for Berkshire with 32 while Henley teammate Matt Rowe was next best on 25.
Berkshire opened their attack with Chris Peploe and he started his second over with two wickets in successive deliveries, including trapping Coles lbw first ball. Wokingham’s Peploe went on to finish with 3-15 from 10 overs.
The Oxon middle-order steadied the ship, moving from 51-4 to 98-5 before Ollie Clarke fell for 26 off the bowling of Sheikh (2-21) who plays in Division 2 of the Middlesex County League.
A late replacement for the injured Luke Beaven, Sheikh also trapped Gareth Andrew in front for a four-ball duck, but skipper Jon Cater, with a very patient 27, and George Tait (12) saw their side home at 117-6 with five overs to spare.
Berkshire, who had beaten Bedfordshire at Dunstable in their previous group game, next face Wales National Counties at Newport on June 27.
By Dave Wright