THERE is still no stopping unbeaten Berkshire as they powered to their fourth successive Western Division win by crushing Shropshire by 241 runs at Shifnal this week.

With two games remaining, the defending champions are well placed to retain the title and qualify for the national play-off final against the Eastern Division champions for the fourth successive season next month.

Despite missing several key players, Berkshire still proved far too strong in all departments for Shropshire.

They laid the foundation for the victory when they posted a formidable 90-over total of 350-8 on Sunday with skipper James Morris making an excellent 96 and opener Archie Carter 83.

Carter's Wokingham teammate Callum Creighton was given his senior debut following his 10 wickets in two Berkshire Under 17 games last week.

The left-arm seamer who attends Shiplake College was soon among the wickets, taking 1-17 off eight overs, but the bowling honours went to Andy Rishton who claimed 5-46 as Shropshire were shot out for 142, a deficit of 208.

Berkshire didn't enforce the follow-on; instead preferring to go for quick runs in their second innings to take the game beyond the home county's reach.

With Euan Woods top-scoring with 50 and Michael Williams making 36 not out, the visitors declared on 200-8, setting their hosts an impossible target of 409.

But Shropshire didn't go down easily, surviving for 100 overs before being dismissed for 167 with Luke Beaven taking 4-20, Rishton 3-42, Chris Peploe 2-35 (off 35 overs) and Woods 1-38.

Wokingham's Sukhi Kang took a total of six catches behind the stumps in his first Championship game for three seasons.

Berkshire are back in action this Sunday (11am) when they face Wiltshire in the semi-finals of the Unicorns Trophy at Finchampstead.

Admission to the ground is free and there will be a barbecue.

The winners will meet Cumberland or Staffordshire in the final at Wormsley on August 28.

Wiltshire's hopes of catching Berkshire in the title race look all but over following a 139-run defeat by Wales inside two days at South Wilts CC. It was Wales' first Championship win in three years.