BARROW collected their first victory in Division One when they beat visitors Davenham by five wickets.
The Croft wicket looked flat and dry - a real bonus after the recent downpours - and after winning the toss and inserting Davenham, the decision quickly looked flawed as runs were accumulated at a rapid rate.
With Lee Dwyer brought on to bowl and Mal Barrow bowling an immaculate length, the Barrow team developed a stranglehold and runs dried up.
Davenham reached 80-2 after 30 overs with wickets in hand and began to accelerate. The final total of 138-5 was always going to be testing and Mal Barrow finished with 4-31 from 23 overs.
With Barrow losing an early wicket, it was left to Nick Bell and debutant James Myers to build a platform. Against some accurate bowling, Myers needed all his experience gained in the Bradford League to safeguard his wicket and when he was adjudged lbw for 16, Barrow had reached 52-2.
It was left to the middle order to accelerate the run rate. With Bell batting with skill and confidence, a total of 102-4 was reached before Bell was dismissed for 52.
With Barrow requiring five runs per over, it was left to captain Gareth Pawlett to hit a quick fire 22 not out and give Barrow a deserved victory with two overs to spare.
Barrow are at Hale Barns tomorrow, hoping to maintain this positive start in Division One. nOakmere are the early leaders following their second successive victory, this time against Wilmslow at Overdale Lane.
Their two Andys - Beswick and Norton - exploited the damp, humid conditions. Both prompted a good deal of playing and missing and Beswick suffered three dropped catches.
Star fielder was Jon Owen behind the wickets and he made up for errors in the field with two lightning stumpings and a catch.
Norton took 3-22 and Craig Phelan (3-14) finished Wilmslow off at 89.
Oakmere made 94-2 with Ian Eaton (37no) taking the batting honours, and Oakmere look for a hat-trick of wins when they visit Mere tomorrow. nMalpas' game at Stockport Georgians was abandoned without a ball being bowled. They meet Weaverham at home tomorrow. nAlvanley had the better of a frustrating draw at home to Barnton. Although the morning rain had stopped, there was still dampness in the air and the ball moved around significantly.
Openers Cei Sanderson and Mark Szymura were both out early, but a strong partnership developed as Nick McKay and Glen Pickersgill went on the offensive.
Pickersgill had to retire hurt on 31 after pulling a thigh muscle, but this only encouraged McKay to be more aggressive, hitting two sixes before being bowled for an excellent 68.
At 111-3 off 29 overs, the platform was set for a high score. John Farmer showed a new dimension to his game, hitting three leg-side sixes in a quickfire 32no, which helped Alvanley close at 195-7 off their 45 overs.
After tea, Alvanley took the field in bright sunshine. Opening bowlers James Rowlinson and Mark Leadbetter both bowled a good line but could not find the edge of the willow.
It took a fine team effort between Szymura and Sanderson to relay the ball from the furthest corner of the field to run out opener Yarwood.
This event had a psychological impact on the other batsman, Bebbington, who struggled to score 26 in almost two hours. McKay, Peter Pearce and Phil Jones all bowled economically and removed the Barnton middle order.
At 77-5 off 30 overs, Alvanley had 15 overs to take five wickets for victory. Pearce set a very aggressive field and bowled an impeccable line, claiming 5-31 off 15 overs.
At the other end, Alvanley's bowlers were rotated in an attempt to unsettle the batsmen. McKay took 2-22 off seven overs and Jones 1-19 off seven, but it was not quite enough as Barnton's last pair hung on for a draw and closed on 128-9.
Pickersgill hopes to be fit at Homes Chapel tomorrow, having had to sit out the entire Barnton innings.
The second-team game at Davenham was a victim of the weather. nTrafford beat Cholmondeley by five wickets in a reduced-overs game because of a wet wicket and outfield.
Ed Middleton top-scored for Cholmondeley with a fine 43 as they struggled to 105 off their 36 overs.
Trafford opener Steve Warner hit a rapid 54, including six sixes off 23 balls, as Trafford knocked off the runs (John Williams 3-29, Steve Egan 2-24).
Cholmondeley seconds earned a winning draw against Prestbury after posting a target of 154-7 declared (Phil Evans 36, Simon Gardiner 34, Mal Holman 34). Prestbury were hanging on at 102-8 at the close (Terry Atkinson 3-35, Steve Young 2-40).
Cholmondeley are at home to CH Ladybridge tomorrow.
The Wirral v Holmes Chapel match was also a weather casualty.