It’s back to base for Burnmoor after their worst result of the summer saw them drop to second in the Readers Durham Cricket League table.
The Moor managed to maintain their unbeaten record, but that’s all that can be said of a game in which they picked up just seven points.
It is their poorest output in points terms from any of the 16 games they have played.
And with Esh Winning outplaying Boldon CA to pick up a maximum 30 points, they are now back on top of the tree with a three point advantage.
Horden were touted as the Moor’s ‘bogey team’ ahead of the game, and so it proved again as they took significant advantage of a depleted attack, to post a 50 over score of 236-6.
Adrian Hedley was the bogey man, crashing eight fours and five sixes, in a 116-ball knock of 103, and he was given tremendous support by Scott Birks, with an unbeaten 70 scored from just 72 balls.
The experience of Gary Brown shone through as he reeled off 12 overs to pick up 3-36, but the rest of an attack, missing Ian Conn, Paul Davidson and Karl Bellerby, struggled to contain the rampant home batters.
Any hope of them chasing down the demanding target, in the 43 overs available, perished along with the loss of four early wickets, including that of Jimmy Daley.
It was left to Martin Thursfield (51 not out from 86 balls) and skipper Alec Linsley (23 not out) to complete a successful damage limitation exercise as the Moor closed on 140-4.
Sometimes fate plays a hand in cricket, being in the right place at the right time occasionally as important as the skills of the side.
And fate decreed that it was Burnmoor’s luck to be facing one of the stronger sides in the league, on a day when their attack was severely depleted.
While Esh were meeting up with a CA team, who were in fine form, but who had to cope with the absence of several key players on this occasion.
And they failed to cope as the visitors posted a challenging 202-9, skipper Tommy Nixon doing his best to keep things in check with 3-37.
Opener Andrew Brown (49) provided the one bright spot in the CA reply, but the wickets were clattering at the other end as Paul Chivers (3-18) and Jalat Khan (3-3) proved too incisive for the home team who slid to 125 all out.
Castle Eden, in third, missed their chance to make up significant ground after being unable to bowl out fourth-placed Easington, despite dominating the game.
Jude Dinushan (54) hit five fours and four sixes to lift Castle to a 49 over score of 194-9, and then he grabbed 6-15 in his 12 overs.
However, Easington held the rest of the home attack at bay to close out on 94-8.
Kimblesworth proved too strong for Peterlee, rolling their hosts over for 84 and then securing a ten wicket success.
Stephen Meek stole the headlines with five wickets and fifty runs.
That victory lifted Kimbles above Philadelphia to seventh after Phili were held to a draw at Seaham Park.
Where there were two centurions, Anthony Hornsby, making 103 as the visitors piled on 261-4 in 44 overs, and then Gaurav Jathar, hitting 22 boundaries in his unbeaten 107, which ensured Park a share of the spoils on 176-7.
Two players said goodbye in style, Muhammad Nawaz cracking 140 from 121 balls as Mainsforth defeated Dawdon by 91 runs – he has now returned to Pakistan to join up with the country’s under 23 squad – and leg-spinner Ben Muir signed off at Hylton with four wickets as his side won by 113 runs against Whiteleas – he is now on his way back to Australia.
But it wasn’t such a good day for Bill Quay and Marsden.
The Quay lost to Ushaw Moor by 35 runs despite 80 from Deven Bell, and Marsden were hammered by Evenwood, after being bowled out for 75, Shaz Mahmood their destroyer with 7-28.
The battle for ‘middle earth’ has changed in complexion with Marsden, who lost just once in their first 13 matches to be up amongst the leaders, now plummeting towards the forbidden zone after failing to win any of their last five.
Ushaw Moor’s victory kept them in with a shout in 16th spot, but Durham City, in 15th, had to be content with 16 points from a dominant draw at Murton.
Jake McCann (106 not out from 150 balls) and Nick Maiolo (13 fours and one six, in 91 not out from 57 balls) were in total control for City, and the declaration came after 46 overs on 243-2.
The home team clung on for dear life to finish on 119-8 after 48 overs and end a run of five consecutive defeats.
Ian King was their saviour in the number eight slot with an unbeaten 32 which absorbed 80 balls.
In other highlights, Ryhope’s Chris Errington scored 76 of his 81 runs in boundaries, but his team had to settle for a draw at Shildon.
Stephen Wright (5-46) and David Neild (4-31) held out hope of another Silksworth victory until visitors Crook bowled their hosts out for 147 to win by 16 runs.