Dawdon gave their Division One survival hopes a boost, claiming a much-needed 50-run home win over fellow strugglers Horden.
The hosts batted first at Green Drive on Saturday and scored 143, led by 36 from Alan Anderson. Will Iceton returned 4-60 and Scott Birks 3-28 as Horden bowled well, with Lal Kumar taking 2-20 in 12 overs.
Dawdon’s attack, though, did even better when the visitors batted, with Horden, who had only 10 men batting, dismissed for 93.
Lal Kumar was the only batsman to offer much resistance, firing 35, with five boundaries, as Liam Cowell stole the show with a haul of 4-30. David Coates took 2-20, with Mark Ewart and Clayton Malgas also striking.
Birks added 20 and Lee Jackson 15 before the was run out to end a positive partnership with Kumar.
Dawdon are six points behind third-bottom Bill Quay and 42 adrift of fourth-bottom Horden.
Castle Eden are the new leaders, after edging home by just eight runs in a close match at home to Philadelphia.
The home side were all out for 150 as Adam McGuire impressed for Phili, snatching an excellent 6-32, with Robbie McGlasham scoring 41 and John Spellman Jnr 33.
Phili opener Shaun Smith hit 64 and Peter Greenwell 30, but they collapsed to 142 all out as Ryan Ball took 4-29 and McGlasham 3-23.
Tudhoe extended their advantage over third-placed Durham City to 16 points despite their abandoned match at Littletown.
Half-centuries from Dean Thexton (50, with six fours, off 50 balls) and Roshan Jayatissa (54, with six fours and three sixes, off 35 balls) guided Tudhoe to 188-4 declared in 32 overs before the rain came.
Ian Grainger fired four fours and two sixes in a 32-ball 44, with opener Abhiram Joshi making 24 off 56 balls.
Siddhesh Kinalekar took 2-71 for Littletown, with Berwick Hall managing 1-30 and Luke Hutchinson 1-16.
They are second, level on points with Castle Eden.
Durham City, in third, had Seaham Park reeling when rain came to the visitors’ rescue at Green Lane.
On a rain-hit afternoon, Park won the toss and elected to bat, but they struggled against City’s bowlers and fell from 40-3 to 46-7 before finishing on 86-7 after 28 troubling overs.
Mark Race (26no, with two fours, off 35 balls) and Angus McKenzie (11no, off 38 balls) put on an unbeaten 40 for the eighth wicket, while Neil Young and Dale Shaw both managed 14.
Danielle Hazell led the way with 3-24 for City, supported by Paul Morales (2-16), Rob Macdonald (1-19) and Nick Howe (1-19).
Esh Winning were in a similar healthy position, with Bill Quay on 80-8, when the weather set in. Eddie Watson grabbed 3-13 and Jamie Robinson 3-11.
Whiteleas and Harton secured a ‘winning draw’ against Easington in a weather-affected game which only began at 3pm.
Leas made 185-6 in their 37 overs, despite falling to 28-3 and 35-4.
Dev Sudhir was the star of the show, with a brilliant knock of 110, which only ended in the last over, while Abdul Ameer hit 32.
Jiniv Joshi, Robbie Atherton and Dane Wilson all struck twice for Easington.
Easington reached 35 before the first wicket fell to Rameez Nawaz’s super catch in the slips.
Chris Nichol added to that to take 3-30 and Easington were content to bat out for the draw, reaching safety on 136-6 to secure seven points, while Leas managed 14. Andrew Davis top-scored with a solid 40, while Atherton added an unbeaten 36, with four boundaries and two huge sixes. Arrowsmith took 2-19.
In Division Two, only two victories were secured.
Murton won the battle at the bottom, defeating Boldon CA by 29 runs.
They posted 153-7, with Richard Arnott making 48 and Luke Thompson 34, with Rajan Kumarasamy claiming 3-17 and Naveen Marella 3-40.
In reply, the home side fell to 124 all out, despite a fine fine 57 from Stuart Smith, with captain Sam Sanderson taking 4-33.
Second-placed Marsden, still with a game in hand on leaders Crook, cruised to a comfortable success against Langley Park.
Steven Neilson enjoyed a day to savour, grabbing 5-5 as Langley were bowled out for 81.
Chris Mann then smashed 66 not out to steer Marsden home in quick time.
Ushaw Moor’s promotion ambitions were hit by the abandonment of their game against visitors Silksworth.
The home side won the toss and elected to bat, making 156-6 in 27 overs before the rain brought an early end to proceedings.
Opener Peter Maddison hit three fours and four sixes in a run-a-ball 68, supported by Mike Thorpe’s 43 off 44 balls, with five fours and a six. Aaron Proud added three fours in a 24-ball 26.
Kumar Navarathnam was the pick of Silksworth’s bowlers, grabbing 2-46, while Paul Brigham took 2-58, Robbie Jones 1-25 and Paul Dixon 1-26, the big wicket of Maddison.
Lowly Silksworth took eight points, with Ushaw Moor securing seven.
Evenwood were 127-5 when their match with Ryhope was abandoned. Owen Peddelty scored 41 for the home side, while Ryhope bowler Sagar Udeshi had taken 3-16.
Hylton never made a start in their home match against front-runners Crook at the Billy Hardy Complex.