There was a rare level-scores draw at Little Budworth on Saturday as County Division One title challengers Oulton Park took on leaders Sale.
The table-topping visitors batted first and posted 220, Chris Canning making 60 and Ryan Rickelton 38 as Iro De Silva bagged 3-52 and Guy Emmett 3-63.
Oulton wound up with 220-8 when tail-ender Andy Mills was run out by Tyrone Lawrence off the final ball, the last of four run outs.
Danny Leech scored 47, De Silva 39 and Martin East 31.
Third-placed Oulton take 16 points under match regulations which means they still trail Sale by 27 points with four games remaining.
Christleton were beaten by 89 runs by Davenham at Butcher’s Stile.
The hosts posted 197, Phil Sharples contributing a key 51no at number eight as Zaigum Abbas snaffled 3-80.
In reply, Christleton crumbled to 62 all out, Atif Bajwa hit 25 but the other 10 batsmen were dismissed for single figures against fine bowling from Robin Taylor 7-34.
The Swans are now without the services of star Kiwi batsman Mitch Renwick, who has returned home a month early for treatment to a torn hamstring. During his time with the Little Heath club, Renwick scored 829 runs, including four centuries, at an average of more than 90.
Elsewhere in Division One, Tattenhall continued their upward trend with a 69-run home win against erratic Urmston after posting 144. Urmston were all out for 75, Phil Johnson taking 5-45.
In the Premier Division, Chester Boughton Hall were unable to force victory against a stubborn Marple side, having to settle for a high-scoring draw at Filkins Lane.
On a near perfect batting strip, Lee Dixon’s side won the toss and batted first, accruing 298-9.
Having rattled to 181-1 at the half way stage, they were pegged back a little – but were confident of forcing their first league win for seven games after Rick Moore had struck a fine 92 and Guy Dunbavand 79, the pair adding 150 for the second wicket.
Ex-Cheshire captain Andrew Hall led the basement club’s response with 55, John Morgan and Sam Harbinson also prospering with 52 and 53 respectively.
Jack Williams was relentless as his leg spin returned 6-80 but with Andy Greasley and Andy Wyle in dogged fashion at the death, Marple held out at 247-9 for the draw.
In Division Two, Alvanley turned in their first below-par performance in two months – and were duly beaten at home by Mobberley.
Alvanley chose to bowl first, a decision that looked like it might pay dividends as Chris Charles found bounce and movement with the new ball. However, ex-Lancashire batsman Nathan Wood (88) anchored the innings and, with wickets in hand late on, the last 10 overs went for 80 runs as Mobberley made it to 248-5.
Alvanley were all out for a disappointing 184 from 41 overs in reply. Ste Charles (35) looked like he could be in for the day, but his dismissal turned the game on its head. Andy Bennion smashed 26 in just 12 balls and Will Speakman (30) looked in fine touch, but it was not to be for Alvanley.
Chester County Officers made it four wins out of five with a demolition of high-fliers Winnington Park.
Having been inserted, Chester showed plenty of spirit all down the order to notch a tremendous score of 195-8.
Graham Dodd (19) started well and Mike Jones (39) and Chris Wright (16) set up a late flurry by Alex Kerrison (60no) and Alan Watt 13.
It looked a mountain to climb for Winnington and wickets fell regularly to opening bowlers Rhys Thomas (2-43) and Steve Johnson (2-35).
Change bowlers Mike Roberts (2-10) and Kerrison (4-13) chipped away and Winnington could not resist. Johnson’s sprint round the boundary, full length dive and one-handed catch at long on brought the house down.
Winnington were 113ao and the 25 points took Chester a little clearer for danger – ut they are not safe yet.
Also in Division Two, Bunbury’s relegation fears deepened when they lost at home to leaders Lymm OP.
The third-bottom side batted first and made 180-9ic but Lymm soared to victory with 181-0 (Paul Tong 88no, Travis Scholes 84no) in reply.
Oakmere won at Ashley, who batted first and posted 157-9ic (Dan Wood 4-48).
Rick Lyons (41no) and Craig Phelan (38no) starred as Oakmere replied with 156-6.
An unbeaten half-century from Edward Leneghan (51no) and 43 from Danny Mullins helped Kingsley to 161-6 and victory at Barnton.
Earlier, the hosts had scored 159-8ic (Chris Martin 3-38).
Barrow were toppled from the top of Division One when they lost at Lindow, who batted first and made 136ao (Ywal Williams 4-22).
The visitors were 97ao (Gareth Hughes 29no) in reply.
Doomed Malpas were held to a draw by Poynton, who made first use and posted 199-3ic (Damian Stringer 85no, Ryan Dunning 2-54).
Malpas survived with 124-9 (Matthew Dunning 28).
In Div Three, Cholmondeley look in real trouble after losing to rock bottom Winsford.
They were 90ao after making first use, and Winsford eased to 91-4.
New signing Umer Zeb made a memorable debut for Westminster Park, helping his side claim a 100-run derby win over Saughall in Division One.
Zeb made the most of a soft, green home track to score 70 off just 60 balls as Park racked up a score of 215 in 42 overs.
Saughall skipper James Huxley had won the toss and put the hosts in to bat.
It looked like being a long afternoon for Saughall but when Mike Andrews grabbed three wickets with the score on 91, Westminster Park were five down and the opponents were in the ascendancy.
However, Zeb led a counter attack and, when he was finally caught by the scampering Charlie Whitworth at point, Park had broken the 200 barrier.
Andrews was the star performer with the ball, taking 6-73, while Mandeep Singh (3-69) helped mop up the tail.
Saughall’s reply was a batting horror show from the moment Huxley (2) cut straight to gulley. The visitors were in dire straits at 71-7 and although Andrews (53) and the tail restored some respectability, they were bowled out for 115 with nine overs remaining.
Jaskaran Singh took 5-25 and also claimed an outstanding catch.
In Division Two, Norbury conceded their match at Frodsham.