HEREFORDSHIRE were hammered by 149 runs in their friendly match with MCC at Brockhampton on Sunday.

But the big winners were St Michael’s Hospice for whom this was the third annual benefit match in memory of former Brockhampton skipper Andrew Watkins.

Andrew’s mother Sue was the principal organiser of the day which should raise around a five-figure sum for the Bartestree-based hospice.

MCC lost a couple of quick wickets to James Rudge (3-63) after winning the toss and electing to bat, including that of Herefordshire vice-captain Nick Hammond, pinned leg-before first ball turning out
against his usual team-mates.

But after that, batting began to look easy with Ben Cochrane Price (51) and former Worcestershire skipper Daryl Mitchell (58) posting a stand of 97 for the third wicket.

Things did not get any better after they were parted with another Herefordshire old boy Alex Milton producing the best batting of the day.

Milton crashed 11 fours and a six in an 81-ball 90, sharing a sixth-wicket stand of 112 with C Vernon (56) as MCC closed on 305-8 at the end of their 50 overs.

Dave Ball, who was presented with his county cap to mark 50 appearances for the county side during the lunch interval, was comfortably the most economical of the Herefordshire bowlers, returning 1-18 from eight overs.

Although Connor Smith, who batted particularly well to strike 11 fours and a six in his 61, Alex Hinkley (18) and skipper Ben Chapman-Lilley (37 not out) led Herefordshire to a promising position at 107-2, it was all downhill from this point.

The left-arm spin of Andrew Reid Dick, the first over of which had been dispatched for three fours and a six by Smith, suddenly started to pose huge problems for the remainder of the Herefordshire batting.

Only Zak Abbas (12) reached double figures as Reid Dick (5-52) ran through the middle order, leaving the county side substantially short when the final wicket fell at 156.

Herefordshire are next in action on Bank Holiday Monday (May 29) when they entertain Cumbria in the first group match of the NCCA 50-over competition at Brockhampton.