WIDNES indulged in luxuries they can ill afford in their first defeat back in the ECB Premier Division of the Murray Smith Cheshire County League.
Victorious on the opening day at Macclesfield, Widnes put themselves under pressure on their visit to Oxton by conceding 26 extras, including 11 no balls.
In what will be a highly-competitive season, they must guard against overstepping the mark so regularly.
It certainly cost them in a last-over thriller as Oxton got home with four balls to spare at Townfield Lane, Birkenhead.
Oxton, chasing Widnes' 181-3, got home at 182-6. And the Beaconsfield Road men will seek better fortunes this Saturday when Nantwich provide the first home opposition for Adam Landry's side (1pm).
On Sunday, Widnes host Bramhall in the Cheshire Cup first round with wickets this time being pitched at 1.30pm.
Widnes had elected to bat first on what looked an excellent batting wicket at Oxton.
However, they were met by some fine bowling - particularly Pearson's seven maidens in his first eight overs.
His fourth over saw the end of James McCoy for one with skip-per Landry following in similar fashion off the very next ball.
Phil Catterall joined Steve Titchard and they had cautiously taken the score on to 36 when Titchard was caught at slip for 28.
Veteran Alan Hitchmough, a late replacement for the injured Tony Hurdley, joined Catterall.
Slowly they began to rebuild the innings, although it was hard going with Pearson completing an admirable spell of 13 overs at a cost of only 17 runs.
He was replaced by John O'Brien who proved just as difficult to get away. It wasn't until the 40th over that Widnes reached treble figures.
The tempo was eventually increased and both Catterall and 52-year-old Hitchmough reached their half-centuries with the latter doing it in style - with a straight six off O'Brien.
The declaration came with Catterall unbeaten on 85 and Hitchmough not out on 59.
Most of Oxton's top order failed but skipper Neil Cross was an exception, making 34, while Matthew Doggart (42) kept his cool to see his side home.
It was Oxton's third win in eight days - the second in the league - and took them joint top of the table. RUNCORN lie joint second in the Meller Braggins Cheshire League Division One with a winning draw at home to Malpas.
It could have been even better had the Moughland Lane side been able to separate the visitors' last pair.
But it was something of a roller-coaster ride as Jamie Hill's side at one stage appeared to be heading for defeat as Malpas reached 67-2 in reply to 137-9 after 45 overs.
Runcorn took 11 points to their visitors' five.
Put into bat, Runcorn had struggled to 54-5 after 20 overs but skipper Hill (29), Mark Cahill (25no), Steve Olleren-shaw (18), David Moore (20), Tony White (15) and Richard Yates (13) bolstered the total. Malpas' D Hunt took 3-22.
Malpas appeared on course but then lost six wickets for 33 runs to plummet to 100-8. Unfortunately, Malpas held on at 111-9 despite good bowling from Hill who claimed 4-23 - all victims being bowled.
Tony White took 2-12, Jack Weston 1-15 off seven and John O'Brien 1-21 from eight overs.
Chris Lindon was impressive in a good all-round fielding effort from Runcorn. Lindon ran out the dangerous Smith for 21, meaning Sutcliffe top-scored for Malpas with 24.