ANOTHER batting collapse cost Herefordshire dear as they slipped to a two-day defeat against reigning Minor Counties champions Berkshire at Finchampstead.

Herefordshire's young side fell away badly after a good start in the first innings and wickets were lost all too easily in the second as Berkshire were able to ease home by 10 wickets, after claiming the extra half-hour.

Things had looked promising, however, on the first morning when Herefordshire skipper Matt Pardoe won the toss and chose to bat first on a fine morning which looked good for batting.

Former Worcestershire opener Pardoe showed plenty of intent as early as the first over when he hoisted opening bowler Tom Nugent for a massive six over square leg.

His opening partner Jack Taylor, pushed up the order in the absence of the ill Jamie Harrison, also looked solid as pair compiled an opening stand of 79 before Taylor (29) drove to mid-on.

Pardoe did exactly the same shortly afterwards when two short of his half-century and things subsided badly after that.

Despite some solid resistance by Benny Ellis-Dabrowski, all 10 county wickets went down in the space of just 62 runs as the Berkshire attack, spearheaded by former Middlesex left-arm spinner Chris Peploe (3-24) and teenage off-spinner Euan Woods (4-18) could celebrate bowling their opponents out for just 141.

Herefordshire kept the pressure on when Berkshire replied and at 125-3 overnight, from 50 of their 90-over allocation, there was some cause for optimism.

But on the second morning skipper James Morris (79) was able to push the scoring rate along as the home side reached 334-8 before the overs ran out.

Herefordshire were quickly in trouble when they batted again with Pardoe, Taylor and Pete Burgoyne, who completed a rare double failure with the bat, back in the pavilion with just 48 on the board.

But Ellis-Dabrowski and Nick Hammond then produced some of the best batting of the match as both teenagers completed maiden county half-centuries.

When they were going well in the afternoon session, hoped rose of a competitive total.

But Hammond (53) was caught behind and two more wickets fell quickly, including the unfortunate Ian Bullock, run out for a duck as Ellis-Dabrowski sought a swift single to complete his half-century.

Although he went on to 73 and Tom Hage stroked an attractive 24, the rest of the wickets fell quickly and Berkshire made easy work of the 22 needed for victory, reaching the target in just two overs.