Summary of results
Saturday August 2
AS WE swing into August and the home straight in some Divisions, the weather once again played a very significant part with more than 50% of matches failing to start. However, those that did exploded with action as excitement continues to mount!
Worcester completed a strong fortnight and have now opened what could prove to be a decisive gap of 34 points over Pershore after they accounted for 6th placed Hagley.
Pershore, despite Liam Ridings taking his league-leading runs tally to 750 for the season, were held to a losing draw by a spirited Harvington, refusing to give into what had looked like looming relegation.
Colwall slipped from 3rd to 5th after a losing draw at Nomads, who have jumped to the head of the chasing pack but are 40 points behind Pershore. For Nomads, Ryan Tongue scored a century as the home side made 261-5 in 42 overs, only to reduce their opponents to nine wickets down for the second week running.
Pedmore and Belbroughton are 4th and 7th after their matches against Redditch and Evesham respectively, fell victim to the weather. The top seven have now opened a gap of 24 points in front of the relegation threatened bottom five.
In the final match, Bromyard's fortunes continued to improve with a hundred from Ash Bullock in a winning draw over Droitwich, and they have lifted themselves off the foot of the table with 95 points, 5 in front of Evesham, but still 14 behind Harvington who are 8 and 9 respectively behind Redditch and Droitwich.
With Worcester's lead promising to elevate them back to the Birmingham League that they left ten years ago, and with games running out, it looks as if the relegation battles could be the best place to go for excitement and next week Evesham host Bromyard in what must be a vital meeting for both.
Burghill and Bewdley both won again and Burghill are now a massive 65 points ahead of third placed side, Dominies.
Burghill stand 30 points in front of Bewdley after beating Feckenham thanks to 111 not out scored by veteran Ed Symonds and 7-54 taken by Ben George.
Bewdley, for their part, beat the rain and Enville while Dominies managed a winning draw at home to Coombs Wood who remain tenth, 34 points above the relegation positions.
Oldswinford were rained off against Malvern, and so lost third place to Dominies, while Cookley had a winning draw with Rushwick. Rushwick actually got the same number of points as Malvern, who they still trail by 4 at the foot of the table, but Malvern did not have to play. The final match saw Wormelow beat Lye by 8 wickets.
Next week Dominies have to defend their third spot away at Oldswinford in what is becoming the race for third and possible promotion depending on the many other issues.
Top three Harborne, Stourport and Bredon were all rained off which allowed Netherton to close the gap by winning at Ross comfortably.
Avoncroft in fifth also took advantage of others' enforced idleness as they won at Tenbury by 1 wicket despite Alex Mason taking 7-74 for the home side.
Bartestree and Lugwardine beat Five Ways and are now 47 points ahead of Kidderminster and surely headed for Division Three. This week, it was Nick Frith's 96 that spurred them on but Marcus Ashcroft completed the day taking 7-60 when Five Ways batted.
Kidderminster had a winning draw at Bromsgrove with James Williams scoring 105 not out and so they have jumped above their hosts and also Himbleton as all the other matches were rained off.
Next week the bottom two, Oldswinford and Himley meet in a vital relegation tussle.
The fifth tier had three matches played which involved all the top five but the rain could not deny Kempsey's promotion push as they swept aside fourth placed Astwood Bank with 92 from Liaqat Hussain.
Barnards Green kept up the pressure on the leaders with a three wicket win at 3rd ranked Hanley, who they now head by 65 points, despite being 20 adrift of Kempsey who they meet next week at Newland.
The third match played saw a win and position improvement for Stourport who beat Old Elizabethans by just 26 runs thanks to6-58 from Matt Pearson.
The top flight had only one match with any play and Colwall returned to the top of the table as they secured a winning draw at home to Nomads with Sam Critchard scoring 142.
Worcester Nomads have moved up a couple of places as well to fourth and now Colwall head Stourport by 10 points who are 4 ahead of Hagley who are themselves 4 ahead of Nomads who head Redditch by 2 and Pedmore by 4.
Overall, the top six are all within a win of the top. Next week, however, Colwall face bottom side Droitwich, Nomads receive Redditch and Stourport host Hagley.
Leaders Enville lost to Bromyard and their lead has now completely disappeared, four weeks ago they were 37 points ahead of Bromyard who have now pipped them by one point. Netherton have joined Enville in joint second. The only other match played saw Coombs Wood record an easy 237 runs win over Dominies.
The third tier had no matches survive the weather so Burghill stay 34 ahead of Bartestree at the top but four sides are within 12 points of second place.
Leaders Martley won at home to Tenbury and thereby regained the lead by 10 points from Bromsgrove who did not play. The only other match played saw Old Vigornians travel to Himbleton and win by 8 wickets, thus cementing fourth place.
Stourport lost to Old Elizabethans who thus did their rivals Barnards Green a good turn, for the Green's win at home to Hanley was enough to put them 9 ahead of Stourport.
Canon Frome's match at home to Netherton survived the weather and their losing draw over previous bottom side Netherton means they are now 11 ahead of Birlingham who did not bowl a ball.
Cutnall Green beat Rushwick in the only other game on and so have moved ahead 9 of Ombersley with four rounds left but they are 10 behind Birlingham who they play next week.
Division Seven is still very close after Nomads regained second spot, beating Belbroughton, and they are now 6 adrift of Worcester who beat Coombs Wood, and these two meet next week. For Nomads, 14 year old Cameron Blakey took 7-23 out of Belbroughton's 139-9.
There was only a mid table match between Kidderminster and Bromyard which ended in a draw, so Evesham are still 3 ahead of Bewdley who are 16 in front of Colwall with just two matches left.
The next two weeks the season looks to heat up again as Bewdley must travel to Evesham and Colwall host rivals Bromyard. The following week Colwall and Bewdley meet at Ghost Meadow, Stowe Lane, Colwall for the final showdown.
Leaders Redditch and Enville both had matches conceded to them, Redditch's fifth, and the other two matches were rained off. With two weeks to go, if Redditch ever get to play another match is very debatable and should ensure their title in the worst possible way!