Hyde back in business
After two cancellations and a defeat in the previous three weeks, Hyde were back in business with a five wickets defeat of rivals Marple at Werneth Low on a day when it became the turn of ECB Premier League leaders Oxton to fall foul of the weather.
The points gap is thus reduced to 17 at the season’s half-way mark, Tom Young proving the Hyde match-winner with a magnificent sustained spell of left-arm fast bowling which earned him figures of 25.3-7-40-7 to dismiss Marple for 151.
Jo Cash top-scored with an unbeaten 36 while former Heaton Mersey opener Mark Bennett scored 28 on his belated senior debut.
After being in trouble at 76 for five against Andy Wylie (3-37), Scott Kirwin, 50 not out and Tom Twiney, 41 led a solid reply of 152 for five.
Oxton were in deep trouble at 71 for seven in reply to Urmston’s 192 for nine when rain ended play at Townfield Lane.
In a match already reduced to 90 overs, Urmston totalled 192 for nine pre-tea, Keith Dickenson top-scoring with 33 against the threat of Andy Birley 5-66 and Gayan Fernando 4-76.
Oxton collected only seven points to their visitors’ 13.
Macclesfield moved up to third spot after opting to take the unusual step of batting first after winning the toss at Neston.
Macc ran up 157 for eight, James Crosthwaite 49, Paul Stimson 4-42, Jordan Free 3-38, after which Neston’s batting failed badly, mustering only 136, disappointed skipper David Hurst top-scoring with 32, while Craig Melrose took 4-21.
The clash between Alderley Edge and Didsbury served up a fine game which lost two crucial overs to rain.
South African big-hitter Jan van Schalkwyck again took the eye for Didsbury with an innings of 84 from 52 balls which included eight fours and five sixes in a tally of 220 for nine, Jason Whittaker 4-89.
Alderley got tantalisingly close at 215 for nine by stumps after two overs were lopped off their innings. Mark Currie scored 67, and Jon Steele 44, while Jonny Fawcett took 5-75 and Jibran Khan 4-84. Didsbury wound up 14 – 9 points in credit.
Chester Boughton Hall kept Widnes in bottom spot with a comprehensive seven wickets win at Filkins Lane after their visitors had been dismissed for 156.
Top scorers were the two young men just up from Oxford University, Ben Williams 39 and Sam Agarwal 30, while Ian Linwood took 5-56. Chester won comfortably at 157 for three, Steve Ogilby playing a skipper’s innings of 73 and Warren Goodwin 42.
Rain ruined Nantwich's match against Toft which the champions might have won had the elements not intervened.
Nantwich were bowled out for 130, Shaun Mudalige 5-35, and Toft had stuttered to 75 for eight off 23 overs when the players were forced off, Jimmy Warrington taking 3-16 and spinner Ollie Griffiths 3-30.