OULTON Park wiped the floor with last season's Division One champions Poynton - a harsh taste of life at the top for a team which suffered only one defeat while gaining two successive promotions.
Park's new bowling sensation, 19-year-old Danny Jones, who has been selected for Cheshire after only two Premiership games, removed Poynton's top three with a devastating spell of left-arm pace.
Quicksilver wicketkeeper Mike Bentham, with three victims in the match, picked up two, including the key wicket of the hard-hitting Barbadian Derwent Thompson to reduce the home side to 26-3.
Chris Jones then replaced his brother and his left-arm spin soon produced results with 4-27. Skipper Stewart Eaton took over from Jason Whittaker and the collapse continued as he picked up 3-14, and only a last-wicket stand of 16 took the score to 84. Oulton were outstanding in the field with Andy Wilgose taking two important catches.
Liam Buchanan took two overs to assess the wicket and then unleashed a breathtaking display of shots before he was stumped for 42 out of 46.
Cheshire bat Danny Leech, who up to then had only needed to say 'great shot', saw Park home with a calm 29no with Paul Berry adding an undefeated 16.
The seconds also had a convincing victory, bowling Poynton out for 118 (Ric Moore 3-8, Steve Wright 2-25, Simon Torlop 3-38) before replying with 120-2 (Mark Johnson 40no, Nick Jones 30, Steve Yates 24no).
Oulton Park's Andy Wilgose and Paddy Guest have been selected for Cheshire U19s against English Universities at Sheffield next Thursday.
Four members of Park's U15s have been awarded county colours - Jimmy Guest, John Kettle, Ric Moore and Laura Thompson.
Park's Kieran Berrington, Mike Sambell and Oliver Thompson have been selected for the Cheshire U11s.
Christleton bounced back from a home defeat with a resounding victory at Alsager. The visitors won the toss and acting skipper Jim Gillson asked Alsager to take first knock on a pitch that looked spongy and likely to assist his bowlers.
Openers Greg Malkin and Jason Ashcroft each took a wicket and bowled so economically that only 28 had been scored after 20 overs.
The introduction of off-spinner Guy Newell paid dividends yet again and the wickets soon began to fall as he finished with the excellent figures of 6-39.
Keeper Gareth Jacobs was once again tidy and finished with a hat-trick of stumpings. The home team was left with little option but to carry on for the full 55 overs for the disappointing score of 145-9 declared.
In response, Christleton opened with Marouf Khan and Simon Ratcliffe and the pair rattled along serenely to knock off the home team's total in only 27 overs. Khan was his usual powerful self and finished with 87 not out, ably backed up a solid 53no from Ratcliffe.
Christleton make the short trip to Birkenhead tomorrow.
On Sunday, Christleton had a National Village Knockout second-round game against Hawarden Park. Both teams had availability problems and this left youngsters filling important berths and performing creditably for both sides.
Batting first, Christleton were indebted to a patient and watchful innings of 50 from Richard Morgan-Jones, by far the lion's share of a disappointing 120 all out.
However, the Little Heath team performed better with the ball and fielded outstandingly well to record a victory with Park 101ao. Seventeen-year-old bowlers Ben Turner and Matt Malkin bowled tight spells at an important stage of the game
The seconds were beaten at home by five wickets against Bredbury St Mark's after being bowled out for 123. And although Jim Dathan claimed five wickets, the visitors recovered well from 23-3 with the help of a 90-run stand.
On the hottest day of the year, Tattenhall were asked to bat on a soft, sponge-like wicket at Middlewich in a Division Two fixture.
Openers Andy Phelan (30) and Jim Dawson (21) got off to a steady start, reaching 39 without loss, and were just beginning to play some attractive shots when the Australian Dawson called for a run to square leg and, despite a full-length dive having rightly being sent back by Phelan, failed to recover his ground and was run out.
This led to a collapse with the remaining nine wickets accumulating only 60 runs. The team were not helped with four lbw decisions against them, three of which were questionable.
Only Robin Mulvihill, at number six, provided any substance to the lower-middle order, reaching 20no at the end as Tattenhall staggered to 99ao.
Middlewich got off to a poor start with their first wicket falling in the first over. But with only a modest total to reach, they could wait for the bad ball and pick up ones and twos in an effort to reach their target.
Despite the ever-reliable accuracy of Mel Dobson and a good opening spell from Simon Carruthers, it was always going to be difficult to defend a low total. Again, Tattenhall were not helped with further lbw appeals going against them and Middlewich reached their target with five wickets down and many overs to spare.
In essence it could be said that the game was won and lost on the initial toss of a coin, with neither captains wanting to bat first.
But neither the pitch nor the average quality of the Middlewich bowling warranted a batting collapse of that magnitude. A more disciplined approach is required if Tattenhall are to prosper.