AN extraordinary weekend of Stay In Devon North Devon League action produced wins for three of the league’s basement sides.
The results were all the more remarkable for Division Two’s Lynton and Lynmouth and Division Five’s Nomansland, who both bagged first wins of their respective seasons.
In Division One, Newton Tracey took over at the top of the table after a 30-run win over the previous leaders Filleigh.
Rob Gear (69) and Simon Gear (52) led Tracey to 20. Martin Brice claimed 5-11 and James Popplewell took 3-29 for Filleigh who then slipped to their second defeat of the top flight season, bowled out for 172.
Rob Collier hit 68 for the visiting side while Phil Steward claimed 4-27 from the new table-toppers.
Braunton bagged their third top flight win of the season and ended the outside title hopes of Sandford after landing a 49-run home victory.
Tom Mitchum opened for Braunton and went on to hit a splendid 118, leading his side to 229-7.
John Baglow chipped in with 26 while both Luke Wright and Sean Hawkins claimed two wickets for the Mid Devon side. Wright then top scored with 70 in the reply with the final wicket falling at 180.
Dan Crowcombe claimed 4-40 and Baglow completed a fine all-round shift with 3-37.
Division Two leaders Halberton won the Mid Devon derby against Heathcoat.
The Knightshayes men fielded three elevens on the day as they also had a Devon Senior Cup semi-final and a North Devon League Division Four game to negotiate.
Sean Andrews and James Davis both hit scores of 49 while Tom Radley picked up 3-32.
There were two wickets each for Dan Coles and Jeremy Turner as Heathcoat were bowled out for 194.
Greg Maher then led the successful run chase with a knock of 96 while the in-form Tom Sambrook chipped in with 70 as Halberton got home with six wickets and as many overs to play with.
They were celebrating at the Sandrock Hotel after Lynton and Lynmouth finally won a league game at the 11th time of asking, beating visiting Shebbear by seven wickets.
Martin Bray hit 59 to lead the visitors to 211-8. Alex Spice claimed 2-30 for the hosts who then stormed to a comprehensive victory thanks to a 156-run partnership for the second wicket between Tristan Jones (83no) and Lewis Constable (80) that eventually led to their side winning at 212-3.
In Division Three the top-of-the-table game saw Shobrooke Park emerge victorious and swap places with morning leaders Holsworthy.
Belstone’s Callum Mallett claimed a fivefer as Bratton Fleming were bowled out for 107.
Harry Bushin picked up 2-17 and then both Scott Tremain and Phil Woods chalked up half-centuries as Belstone raced to a 10-wicket win to climb to third in the table.
In Division Four, Dominic Ford (78no) and James Geen (58) led North Molton to a nine-wicket win at Barnstaple and Pilton II to spoil the 60th birthday celebrations of Barum’s Rodney Bowden.
Skipper for the day, Bowden had earlier hit 20, but it was Matt Lake’s 64 that was the top offering as well as 41 extras in a total of 195 all out.
James Jewell took 4-25 for the visitors, who were then seen to victory by Ford. James Thomas was the lone home bowler to take a wicket, finishing with 1-35.
There was a real surprise with basement dwellers North Devon III toppling leaders Heathcoat II by 101 runs at Instow.
Tom Ansell hit 92 as the home side closed on 195-8. Dan Hooper claimed 3-31 for the visitors who were then bowled out for 95. Only Phil Head (26) made much of an impression as Sam Witheridge (3-3) and Luke Peterson (3-25) got amongst the wickets.
Ilfracombe moved back up to second with a fine display at Westleigh on Sunday. Electing to bat, Westleigh posted an imposing 201, with Lee Farrant (33) and Reece Woolgar (49no) leading the way. Ashok (3-19), Jamie Matthews 2-22 and Tim Bird (2-42) were the main wicket takers.
In reply Jamie Matthews (44) and Dave Hart (27) put on 74 for the first wicket and from that point on Jamie Sutton (78no) saw them home with only three wickets down and a couple of overs to go.
Petrockstowe caused something of an upset with a 43-run victory at high flying Filleigh.
Gary Toop (74) and Lee Cockwill (55) led Petrockstowe to 167-5. Anna Squire was the most successful home bowlers with 2-18. Charlie Cullen then hit a superb unbeaten 56, but wickets fell at the other end as Filleigh closed on 124-9.
Nigel Cockwill took 3-22 and Lewis Harris bagged a brace with 2-20 as Petrockstowe sealed a sixth win of the season.
In Division Five Nomansland started the day bottom of the table without a win, but by stumps they had beaten the top side and moved to the lofty position of third bottom.
Morning leaders Bishop Nympton batted first and were restricted to 159-9 with only Tony Comer, with an unbeaten 38, making much progress.
The home wickets were shared around with Greg Cole and Matt Milward both bagging a brace apiece but the best of the returns was the 1-7 from six tight overs by Les Rendell.