THE awful weather is finally starting to clear, but with around 40 games left to play, the North Devon Youth Cricket League season will be extended well into the school holidays.
However, there have been some significant moves by the key challengers in each league over the past few days.
Bideford have stormed to the top of the Under 10s with with four consecutive victories.
In their victory over Hatherleigh, Parkhouse took four wickets, while Oli Hannam and Ball were big run-scorers in the win over Filleigh.
Hannam went even better with scores of 29 and 39 in big wins over Braunton and Newton Tracey and Parkhouse and Ford were among the wickets.
In the Under 11s, North Devon moved to the top with a hard fought 16 run over Newton Tracey, despite Billy Gubb’s 26. Chulmleigh hold on to second. Their victory over Newton Tracey by 18 runs was again resisted by Gubb with 31. It was followed by a heavy defeat against Filleigh, though new player Liam Gillbard made a promising 24.
Among the main challengers, Bideford beat North Devon, with Oli Hannam making 27. A fine all round performance by Whittaker with 21 and then three wickets helped Braunton to a narrow victory over Newton Tracey.
In probably the most significant and certainly the most closely fought game of the season to date, unbeaten Under 13 rivals Bideford and Chulmleigh met at Westward Ho!
A thrilling one run victory virtually assured Bideford the title. Fenton Davies’ 37 was not quite enough as Alex Hannam struck with 3-14 just when the visitors looked to have the game in their grasp.
Chulmleigh recovered to beat Hatherleigh, with 20 from David Butler while Craig Penberthy made a stylish 24 for the visitors. Elsewhere Filleigh overwhelmed North Devon , with Henry making 22 and Pomeroy taking three wickets for the Instow side.
North Devon have moved to the top of the Under 15s table with consecutive wins over Barnstaple, Bideford and Chulmleigh.
Ross Clayton made 55 not out, his second half century, and Ali Kelly 29, while Ed Mann took 3-7 to secure victory over Barnstaple.
Barney Meadowcroft’s 30 was enough to beat Bideford, while 65 not out by Mann and three wickets for Ross Clayton brushed aside Chulmleigh.
Braunton look to be the most likely challengers, but had to work harder to beat Barnstaple, grateful to the all-round talents of Callum Mitchell, who made 38 then took four victims with his off-spin. Joe Totterdell made 33 for the visitors.