A HARD-hitting century from opener Liam Gwynne was unable to prevent Herefordshire from exiting the Unicorns Trophy at the quarter-final stage at the hands of Cheshire.

Gwynne smashed 13 fours and four sixes on his way to a 134-ball 130, sharing in a 152-run partnership with Brad Wadlan (79) for the second wicket.

But Cheshire had two centurions of their own, CTipper (116) and R Moore (123), as they eased home by seven wickets with seven balls to spare.

Herefordshire skipper Dave Exall won the toss and chose to bat but the visitors lost two quick wickets before Gwynne and Wadlan began to take control.

Wadlan's runs came from only 69 balls and Ben Stebbings, who came to the crease when the Bridgend all-rounder was dismissed, was in similarly fast-scoring mode, lashing five fours and a six in a 40-ball 47.

The remainder of the Herefordshire batting perished, however, in the pursuit of quick runs and despite having reached an impressive total of 302 when the innings concluded with two balls remaining, the impression remained that they were perhaps 20 runs short of a winning total.

This impression was reinforced when Cheshire, despite losing opener W Goodwin who was forced to retire hurt on 23, piled on the runs, reaching 266 before the first wicket fell when Tipper was caught-and-bowled by Wadlan (1-51).

Moore was run out by Exall but even the end of the pair's huge partnership could not prevent the home side from securing their semi-final place.

Stebbings, who has to attend a funeral, is unavailable for this weekend's Unicorns Championship trip to neighbours Shropshire.

Nitesh Patel takes his place while all-rounder Dave Ball replaces Callum Stewart.