ALVANLEY extended their lead at the top of Division One to 24 points after securing a dramatic tie at Ashley.
A thrilling contest went down to the final over on Saturday.
Ashley were left needing eight runs to win from the final six balls, with three wickets in hand.
Bowler Robin Fisher’s first five deliveries went for seven runs – meaning Ashley needed only one to win and become the first team to defeat Alvanley all season.
But Fisher (4-53) held his nerve and lured David Alves into coming down the wicket and missing his shot, enabling wicket-keeper Chris Fletcher to stump the Ashley batsman and seal the tie.
Alvanley had batted first and made 171-9, recovering from 22-3.
Chris Jones (59) was responsible for Alvanley’s best innings. Fisher also chipped in, scoring 39 off just 31 balls to help Alvanley reach 171-9.
With the new ball in hand, Lee Ainsworth and Fisher helped swing the game right back in Alvanley’s favour at 48-3. But three dropped catches allowed the pairing of Dylan Freitag and Alex Wigfield to hoist Ashley to 103, before the latter was taken at mid-wicket.
Freitag followed lbw to Fisher at 124-5, before Steve Logan’s batting performance allowed for the game’s grandstand finish. After the nerve-racking final over, Ashley were on 171-8.
OAKMERE made easy work of Prestbury, winning by nine wickets. The home side’s bowling ripped through the order, leaving Prestbury with 57. Oakmere quickly made 59-1 for victory.
In Division Two, KINGSLEY recorded an easy victory against Barnton thanks to an impressive bowling and fielding display. Winning the toss, captain Mark Butcher decided to let Barnton deal with the wet patch on a length left by the rain and put them in to bat.
It wasn’t long before Travis Martin (4-31) took advantage of the pitch and began to take wickets quickly, with the first two falling in the fifth over. Tight fielding, including four catches from Ben Pearce, and impressive back-up bowling by Peter Pearce – who also recorded four wickets – restricted Barnton to just 97 off 41 overs.
Kingsley’s reply was almost as smooth as they come, with the loss of Elliott the only blemish on an otherwise perfect scorecard. Ben Pearce (45) and Martin (44no) breezed their way to chase down Barnton's score by the 27th over.
CHOLMONDELEY (289-6dec) drew with Lindow (187-5), while BARROW bowled Winsford all out for 174 but fell short of the target, reaching 131.