NORTH Devon dropped right back into the relegation mire in the Devon League Premier Division when they were seven runs losers at home to fellow strugglers Torquay. Tim Western made a top score of 58 in Torquay's total of 183 for nine - then Usman Malvi ha

NORTH Devon dropped right back into the relegation mire in the Devon League Premier Division when they were seven runs losers at home to fellow strugglers Torquay.Tim Western made a top score of 58 in Torquay's total of 183 for nine - then Usman Malvi had four for 68 a North Devon were dismissed for 176 with 10 balls to go.Those bare statistics don't begin to tell the story of a game that swung this way and that before reaching a thrilling climax.Torquay got just the start they didn't want when opener Will Sears was lbw to Stuart Rhodes in the third over.A 100-run stand between Matt Thompson and Western galvanised Torquay and when Thompson was run out for 49 the runs kept on coming from Malvi (30).Matt Westaway (2-53) accounted for Malvi and finally Western, whom he bowled at 169 for five.Western faced 98 balls for his 58 and hit just three fours.Justin Yau (16) was the only other batter in double figures as Torquay lost wickets in the dying overs having a slog.Malvi, with a little help from Ben Orr and Andy Yau, had North Devon an uncomfortable 77 for five in reply and the only person standing between Torquay and victory was the home side's opener Dan Bowser.Bowser had seen them come and go, but was still there and looked dug in for the duration.Rob Gear (16) and skipper Westaway (15) inched North Devon up to 152 for seven and the game was back in the balance.North Devon needed Bowser to bat through to win the game as they got the target down to 31 to win off five overs with three wickets intact.Rob Ayre, no mug with the bat was at the other end and splitting the stand had to be Torquay's priority. North Devon did if for them when the pair went for an ill-judged run and Justin Yau's throw reached the stumps first.Bowser had been in for 142 balls to make 70 and had hit just five boundaries. Ben Orr, who bowled 15 overs for just 20 runs, was particularly adept at keeping Bowser in check.Dan Pickard was run out as North Devon tried to scramble closer to victory, leaving Ayre and last man Matt Dart to make 15 to win.They got the target down to eight when Ayre went for the big hit off Yau and was caught by Thompson out on the mid-wicket boundary.Torquay are off the bottom again, having traded places with Exmouth, who were rained off at Budleigh Salterton.North Devon are away to Plymouth this Saturday.They go into the match just six points clear of the second relegation place, which is currently occupied by Torquay.l NORTH Devon 2nd XI had no game in the last round of fixtures. This Saturday they are at home to Plymouth 2nd XI