THE three-day Minor Counties Championship game between Cumberland and Bedfordshire was abandoned at Netherfield Cricket Club after rainfall on both Monday and Tuesday put paid to any chances of play.

Cumberland were frustrated after having a good first day where Toby Bulcock returned second innings figures of 5-27 to reduce Bedfordshire onto 78-6, while Cumberland held a healthy 157-run lead after being bowled out in the first innings for 252.

Bedfordshire, who had former England spinner Monty Panesar in their team, struggled throughout on the only day played at Netherfield Cricket Club.

Cumberland made a slow start as opener Ross Zelem was trapped LBW by Dean Bryce.

The home team’s early problems continued when Bryce claimed the wicket of Michael Slack who picked out Nicholas Barden, while a partnership of 46 between Will Hale and Sam Dutton guided Cumberland to 85 before Hale picked out Bryce off the bowling of Tom Brett.

Cumberland recovered through a partnership of 65 between captain Gary Pratt and Dutton as the hosts raced onto 149. Pratt fell for 49 after being caught by Barden from a Panesar delivery.

The hosts continued to press on as Callum Moffatt and Dutton added 17 more runs, before Moffatt fell to a Panesar catch from a good delivery by Barden.

Dutton, who top scored with 75, saw his innings come to an end when his powerful drive at Brett fell into the hands of Eliot Cass.

Brett finished the innings with 6-89 after claiming the wickets of Andy Ireland, Sam Wood and Toby Bulcock.

Matthew McKeirnan remained defiant on 50 not out, however Cumberland were bowled out for 252 when Panesar trapped Adam Sydall in the 73rd over.

In reply Cumberland got off to a good start when Ireland trapped Jack Keeping LBW, before Bulcock reduced the visitors onto 48-3 as Matthew English and Rico Henry were both trapped LBW by the former St Annes professional.

Bulcock finished with a return of 5-27 after he dismissed both Nicholas Barden and Jack Kerr, as Bedfordshire ended the first day on 78-6 with Panesar and Bedfordshire captain Andrew Reynaldson at the crease.