CORNWALL almost pulled off a memorable victory in their Unicorns Championship match against the champions Cheshire, at Alderley Edge.

Needing 258 to win Cornwall resumed the final day on 72 for 4. They lost Matt Rowe for 59 but Christian Purchase made a quickfire 91, that included six sixes.

With just 42 needed, and four wickets remaining, he was caught in the deep and the last three wickets quickly followed for just one run to leave Cornwall 217 all out shortly before lunch – a defeat by 40 runs.

In the Cheshire first innings Rick Moore made a century but Cornwall fought back from 220-4 to restrict the home team to 280-9. Shakil Ahmed took five for 88.

In reply Cornwall were dismissed on the second morning for 135, having started the day on 54 for one.

Jake Libby top scored with 34. Cheshire struggled themselves in their second innings and were all out for 135 with Ahmed and Neil Ivamy sharing eight wickets.

Next up for Cornwall in the Unicorn Counties Championship is a match against Wales Minor Counties.

The three day game will be played at Truro Cricket Club and starts on Sunday July 6.

Unicorns Counties Championship Alderley Edge - Cheshire 280-9 (RAL Moore 122, C Rowe 47; Shakil Ahmed 5-88, LIF Sanders 2-53, N Ivamy 2-80) & 135 (LF Dixon 54; N Ivamy 4-37, Shakil Ahmed 4-60). Cornwall 158 (JD Libby 34, PS Smith 23; HJ Killoran 5-64, DA Woods 3-36) & 217 (CBF Purchase 91, MH Rowe 59; R Jones 3-25, DA Woods 3-73). Cheshire (23pts) beat Cornwall (4pts) by 40 runs.