BATTLING Dorset ended two years of MCCA Championship misery by securing a four-wicket win at Herefordshire tonight.
Without a Western Division victory since July 2012, the Dean Park outfit grabbed a memorable triumph in fading light at Eastnor.
It was a much-needed win for a team that had suffered nine successive league defeats and one abandonment since beating Shropshire on home soil two years ago.
Wiltshire, Devon, Wales, Cornwall, Herefordshire, Cheshire, Shropshire and Berkshire had all beaten Dorset since – the latter twice – while a contest against Devon was rained off.
But Dorset’s disappointing run finally came to an end this evening and it was the impact of Ryan Scott that proved crucial in the final reckoning.
The visitors, all out for 120 in their first innings, were chasing a modest target of 207 after Herefordshire managed 327 runs in total.
A knock of 77* from Scott – the son of Middlesex head coach Richard Scott – gave Dorset just the platform they needed.
The Lymington man, batting at number three, was aided by modest efforts by a number of the top order and Jake Lintott was one of the more useful contributors with 30.
With six wickets down, 34-year-old Tom Hicks arrived at the crease and his 35* alongside Scott helped Dorset across the line.
The win marked the completion of a star turn from Hicks, who had claimed nine victims with the ball across the course of the match, which included a haul of six for 45 in the first innings.
Dorset’s next Western Division outing is at home to Oxfordshire from July 20-22.