Buckinghamshire's hopes of qualifying for the quarter-finals of the National Counties Trophy were ended when they lost to Berkshire in a rain-interrupted match at Wargrave on Sunday.
The final Group 4 game was decided by the Duckworth Lewis Stern method, with the host county winning by nine wickets with a ball to spare.
Bucks, who needed to win the game to have a chance of finishing in the top two, chose to bat first and got off a flying start. Thanks to a sparkling 54 from 58 balls by Eliott Callis, supported by Conrad Louth's 42 off 57 balls, Bucks raced to 138-2 off the first 24 overs, with a total of near 300 looking possible.
But the game changed dramatically after the drinks break, as Berkshire spinners Chris Peploe and Max Uttley put the brakes on the innings, both returning excellent figures of 3-26 from their ten overs. Only a late flourish from Conner Haddow, who hit two sixes, enabled Bucks to reach 235-8 from 49.5 overs, the innings being ended a ball early by a torrential shower.
When the game resumed nearly two hours later, Berkshire's adjusted victory target was 194 from 33 overs. Openers Tom Scriven and Savin Perera, who scored an unbeaten 72 from 68 balls, were always up with the clock as Bucks bowlers were unable to pick up wickets to put them under pressure.
After the final rain break, Berkshire needed seven runs from the last five balls of the 25th over to win and finished on 135-1 from 24.5 overs with Perera hitting the penultimate ball for six, to triumph with a ball to spare and qualify along with Group winners Wales for the knock-out stages.
Bucks open their three-day National Counties Championship Division 2 campaign away to Bedfordshire at Bedford School, starting this Sunday.
Bucks team: T Hampton (H Wycombe) capt, M Khan (Frocester), A Woodland (H Wycombe), D Ogden (Harefield), A Kervezee (Halesowen), M Payne (Amersham), A King (Buckingham), J Rodnight (Tring Park), R Richardson (Whitburn), C Parsons (H Wycombe), S Croft (Harefield), C Haddow (H Wycombe).
Full scorecard can be viewed HERE