FILLEIGH maintained their title bid in Division One of the North Devon Cricket League, overcoming Bideford by two wickets in the final over. Visiting Bideford posted a healthy 205-9, led by Tom Allin (45), Matt Allin (38) and Andy Webbe (29). The wicket t

FILLEIGH maintained their title bid in Division One of the North Devon Cricket League, overcoming Bideford by two wickets in the final over.

Visiting Bideford posted a healthy 205-9, led by Tom Allin (45), Matt Allin (38) and Andy Webbe (29). The wicket taking duties were shared around as James Marsh, Jamie Palmer and James Hill all bagged braces.

The Filleigh run chase was timed to perfection with Tom Marsh hitting the first ball of the final over for the four runs that were needed to force victory. Jaz Kalsi (35), skipper Simon Prideaux (22) and James Hill (25) all made contributions and it was left to Tom and Gary Henry to see the hosts over the winning line.

Victoria Park slipped to a fifth successive top flight defeat, beaten at Bradninch by a margin of 105. The Mid Devon side batted first and posted an imposing total of 289-8 with runs down the order. Ian Brown was the only visiting bowler to get any sort of joy with the ball as he took 2-45. Victoria Park were then bowled out for 184 with Brown once more the one player to stand out with an innings of 43, while Dave Gordon chipped in with 26.

Sandford ended a run of three early season top flight defeats by putting Morebath to the sword. The Creedy Park outfit scored a huge 373-4 and then restricted the visiting side to 278-9.

Division Two leaders Shebbear took only 10 men to Barnstaple and Pilton, but it made no difference to the outcome as Barum were bundled out for just 73 in 18.1 overs. It could have been a lot less, but for an unbeaten 20 by Matt Clarke and a battling nine from last man Steve Wheatley, the tail wagging sufficiently for 38-8 to be nudged up to 73 all out. Keith Horwell claimed 5-16 and James Starkey took 3-19. Oli Wickett then hit 34 and Martin Bray 25 as Shebbear won by eight wickets in a contest that lasted less than thirty overs! George McEndoo and Jamie Pow were the two Barum men to bag a wicket.

The other game in the second tier saw second-placed Beaford just fail in an exciting run chase at home to Hatherleigh.

The visitors scored 202-7, Robert Chapman dominating proceedings with 67 and Richard Tidball the best of the rest with 37. Pete McMillan and Mark Lake both bagged braces of wickets for the hosts.

There were contributions down the Beaford order. Nigel Lake (33), Ali McMillan (32), Mark Lake (30) and Geoff Lake (23) all chipped in, but at the other end Rob Cockwill was claiming wickets at regular intervals and finished with 6-42. The final home wicket fell on 199, four runs shy of a victory and so Beaford suffered their first defeat of the league season.

**************************

The one Division Three game produced an exciting derby at Bideford II, where Barnstaple and Pilton II were beaten by five wickets.

Barum batted first and were bowled out in the final over for 178. George Elnaugh (35), Martin Ash (32) and Dave Beer (16) were the main run getters, while John Weeks (4-26) and Dave Hart (3-20) were the main wicket takers.

The run chase was timed to perfection, led by Fergus Bradbeer (40), Dave Norrish (30no) and skipper Hart sealed a fine all round effort with 27. Sean East bagged a brace for Barum as Bideford reached victory on 179-5.

**************************

Division Four saw Bratton Fleming II win by four wickets at Lynton and Lynmouth II on Saturday.

Richard Paines (34) and Barneby Haywood (27) were the main scorers for the hosts in a total of 148-9. But this was passed by the visitors, with main contributions coming from the bats of Brian Ayre (26) and James Thomas (25no).

Newton Tracey were involved in the Division Four 'Match of the Day' as they took on Halberton, the only side to sit above them in the table at the start of play.

Batting first, the Mid Devon men closed on 233-9, with skipper Richard Durrant top scoring with 58 and Sam Franks chipping in with an unbeaten 41. Dave Mason, Connor Nash, Kieron Jarrett and skipper Jon Turner, each claimed a pair of wickets.

Turner then led Newton's brave run chase, hitting the top score of 67. But no-one else was able to stick around for long and the reply floundered on 226-9. Durrant took 2-29 in eight overs and Tom Radley also bagged a brace.

Victoria Park II continue to give youth a chance and although they lost by eight wickets at home to Belstone, there were some encouraging performances from their young brigade.

The hosts batted first and were bowled out for 102, stand-in skipper Stewart Russell top scoring with 29 and debutant wicket keeper Josh Johnson hitting a fine 17. Then a couple of young Johnson's classmates, Paul Schiller and Kieron Soper, each grabbed a wicket as Belstone sailed to an eight wicket win.

Ilfracombe finally broke their run without a win as they beat visiting Kelseymen by 60 runs.

Mark Cavanagh (72), Nathan Townsend (30) and Jamie Sutton (28) boosted the home total to 204. Joe Barnes bowled superbly for Kelseymen with figures of 2-7 from eight overs. There were also braces of wickets for Gary Gomez (2-18), Matt Godwin (2-23) and Taylor Latham (2-43).

Wayne Manning then top scored in the reply with 38 and Paul Jaggers chipped in with 28, but wickets tumbled along the way and the visitors were bowled out for 144. Jamie Sutton was the most successful home bowler with 3-22 and Jason Newman bagged a brace. After four straight defeats the win comes as some relief for all at the club, but they stay bottom after having two points deducted from the overall average for a 'no show' at an earlier game.

**************************

Division Five leaders Petrockstowe continue to sport a 100 per cent record after they edged a thrilling encounter at Heathcoat II.

The home side batted first and were bowled out for 136 as only Matt Handford (28) and Lee Dixon (17) were able to post scores. Four visiting bowlers bagged a brace of wickets apiece, the best figures being the 2-9 of Neil Cockwill.

Petrockstowe's reply also saw wickets fall at regular intervals, but a fine 42no from Lee Harris saw them over the finishing line. Matt Handford (3-20), Will Clancy (3-21) and Lee Dixon (3-29) were the successful home bowlers.

Filleigh III are another side offering youngsters a chance to show what they can do - and they did just that with a 112-run win at Cheriton Fitzpaine.

It was a brace of 14-year-olds who helped guide Filleigh to their closing total of 220. Harley Ashdown hit 46 and McCauley Harrison-Hooton hit 36. The pair added 71 for the seventh wicket. Star of the show for the hosts was former chairman Andy Goddard, who claimed his best ever figures of 5-32, while Jim Fairclough (3-69) and Henry Gavin (2-39) were the other wicket takers.

The Cheriton reply saw wickets fall at regular intervals as only Charles Mossman (32) and Robbie Keight (19) managed to reach double figures. Carl Shaw (4-14) and Tim Henry (3-38) were the main wicket takers as the Mid Devon hosts were bowled out for 108.

North Devon III put Nomansland to the sword at Instow, beating them by 174 runs. Matthew Knapman, batting for much of his time with a runner, top scored with 89 and there was another fluent knock from 15-year-old Max Curtis, who struck 70. Joe Kelly hit an unbeaten 59 and Jamie Overton chipped in with 29 as the home side closed on an imposing 301-4.

Nomansland were then bundled out for 127, with Russell Hilton (26) and Gordon McGovern (21) the only batsmen to deliver as John Wainwright (2-13) from seven overs and another promising Colt, Luke Ansell, took 2-27.