ASTWOOD Bank maintained their Birmingham League Division Three promotion hopes with a 20-run victory over visitors Brewood on Saturday.
Bank’s 20 points means they remain 41 points behind second placed Pershore with five matches remaining and a crucial Bank Holiday weekend now awaits as Steve Adshead’s Bank host rock-bottom Whitchurch on Saturday before visiting Lichfield on Monday.
Bank will be hoping for a favour from leaders Fordhouses on Saturday when the Wolverhampton side host Pershore, who then travel to Eastnor on Monday.
In a match reduced to 22 overs per side on Saturday, Bank posted what proved to be a sufficient 176-6.
Captain Adshead – back in the side after a spell in hospital – made 34 at slightly better than a run a ball and Sam Thomas made 23 off 23.
However, the best scoring rates came from Alex Robinson with 37 off 22 and Tom Underhill with 43 off 22.
An unbeaten 48 off 41 balls from Richard Bradford kept Brewood in the hunt before a hard-hitting 39 off 18 balls from James Lunn, but the visitors could only muster 156-4.
Mike Desmond, Andrzej Jagielski, Joel Haslam and Tom Harris all claimed a wicket apiece for Bank.
TABLE-TOPPING Bank 2nds maintained their three-point lead over second placed Kenilworth Wardens in Division One 2nd XI thanks to a six-wicket success at Oswestry.
In a rain-affected game, the visitors reached their target with five balls to spare.
Oswestry were dismissed for 217 in the 47th over as opener Josh Coleridge (49) top scored and Tom Shepherd and Muhammad Safyan both took three wickets for Bank.
Rain reduced Bank’s innings to 26 overs and they reached 161-4 off 25.1 to pick up maximum points as openers Pete Alexander (83no) and Chris Hancox (35) starred.
Bank 2nds visit Ombersley on Saturday before hosting Shrewsbury on Monday.
ASTWOOD Bank Women had to settle for runners-up spot in Women’s Midlands League Division Two after their final match at Charlbury was abandoned.
With Bank well placed to claim victory, the rain arrived and the abandonment means they miss out on promotion to Worfield, who finished nine points clear at the top having seen their final match abandoned without a ball being bowled.
Clare Boycott made a fine 120 off 119 balls for Bank and skipper Amber Capewell 74 off 54 to guide their side to 221-6 off 40 overs.
In reply the hosts were 46-3 off 14.1 overs as Boycott took 2-7 off five overs but then the elements intervened.
Bank Women won six, lost two, tied one and had one abandonment in their ten league matches.