HYLTON broke their duck by claiming a welcome first Readers Durham Cricket League win of the season to climb out of the First Division’s bottom two.
James Waller hit nine fours and a six as he opened with 60 against Philadelphia at the Billy Hardy Complex.
With contributions down the order, notably 40 from Gary Braithwaite, Clint Gilbert’s 48, John Stokoe’s 28 and 31 not out from Andrew Kibble, the home team posted 264-8 in 44 overs.
David Craig grabbed 3-41 for Phili, with Steve Wright taking two wickets.
Phili were then beaten in the last over, bowled out for 157 as Gavin Barnes (3-16 in 11 overs) led the strike force, Kibble adding 2-4. Shaun Hauxwell fired 59 for the Bunker Hill side, supported by Lee Innes (26).
Defeat completed a tale of woe for Phili as they lost skipper Shaun Smith to an injury in the warm-up, and then Mirza Baig damaged his hand and was unable to bowl.
At the top, Dawdon slipped further off the pace after going down at Mainsforth.
The home team enjoyed the best of starts as their top three batters piled on the runs. Martin Lower (55), Gary Cummings (42) and Mohammed Nawaz (55 from 53 balls) ensured the hosts could post a challenging 196-8, with John Leslie (4-40) and Liam Cowell (2-34) the pick of the bowlers.
Lower (4-17) and Nawaz (3-32) combined once more to leave Dawdon deflated on 107 all out, with No.10 Mark Ewart top-scoring on 27.
Castle Eden’s performance against Tudhoe was even more comprehensive.
Dean Langridge’s half-century gave the home team the confidence to pile on 213-5 in 46 overs, backed by captain Keith Bailey (36) and Alan Unsworth (33no), and then Richard Ede (5-10) blowing the visitors away for 79 in 21.3 overs. Prateek Dabholkar snaffled 3-21 and Ryan Ball 2-2.
That left Castle Eden the biggest movers as they leapt from sixth to third, just eight points behind Dawdon.
But the major threat to leaders Burnmoor could now be Esh Winning.
At the end of last week, Esh had been boosted by the news that their outstanding game at Boldon CA would, after all, be able to be played later in the season rather than be counted as a draw as had been originally indicated.
That gave extra purpose to their efforts against Crook Town, and a comprehensive Jalat Khan (3-6 and 70) inspired win took them to within nine points of a top-two slot, but now with that crucial game in hand.
Burnmoor owed a debt of gratitude to Owen Lancaster as they moved 25 points clear at the top.
After losing six wickets cheaply, Lancaster rebuilt the Moor innings, his unbeaten 60 being primarily responsible for the leaders scrambling up to 143-8 in 48 overs. Martin Thursfield added 18.
With hosts Easington threatening to challenge that target, as openers Kamran Mansoor and Paul Craig maded 34 and 15 respectively, while Jason Moses added 22 not out, Lancaster stepped up to claim five wickets for 12 runs in 8.2 match-defining overs. Karl Bellerby grabbed 2-36.
That brilliant spell saw Easington dismissed for 98, and the 23 points gleaned from the victory were to prove additionally precious for Burnmoor given Dawdon and Tudhoe’s failures.
Boldon CA maintained their unbeaten record as they defeated visitors Horden by five wickets.
Shashank Singh was the main man again as he followed up an 11-over spell of 3-25 with an unbeaten 75 as the CA rattled off a target of 170 inside 33 overs.
Wayne Birks (29) and Matthew Billyard (26) offered the best support to Sahil Madgaonkar’s 53 as Horden made 169-9. Madgaonkar and Scott Birks both grabbed two wickets, but Boldon clinched victory by reaching 172-5, with Gary Frater making 47.
Marsden earned a welcome win, bowling Evenwood out for 111, with Paul Snaith (3-22) and Colin Mann (4-5) heading the strike force to set up a four-wicket win on the back of a Ryan Dowens half-century.