WINS for Whiteleas, Bill Quay and Seaham Park ensured the trio lopped a big chunk off Durham City’s lead at the top of Division Two on Saturday.
City were sitting Saturday out, and their three closest rivals made full use of the opportunity to make up ground.
An Ali Watson hat-trick ended the game in a rush at Langley Park, the home team bowled out for 108 in 27 overs when trying to chase down a Seaham Park target of 181-7.
John Sample’s 61 runs provided some much needed backbone to Seaham Park’s innings after the first four batsmen went for just 12 runs between them.
Second-placed Whiteleas defeated Ryhope by 92 runs after rattling up 244-5. Skipper Ray McRae (78no) and pro Hamad Ul Hassan (90) were the driving forces with the bat, while Kris McShane (4-37) headed an incisive attack which bowled the visitors out for 152.
Faz Hussain took six wickets for Murton, but could not prevent visitors Bill Quay setting a target of 197-8 in 45 overs after Micky Orridge provided a thrilling finale to the innings with a rapid unbeaten 64.
Davey Brown and Anoop Pai then shared six wickets as the home team subsided to 112 all out.
Silksworth (131-3) defeated Shildon (130) by seven wickets, Robbie Jones the all-round star with three wickets for the loss of just one run and 32.
Peterlee remain rooted to the foot of the table following a 51-run defeat at Ushaw Moor, where home pro Billy Teesdale hit a century. James Kemp (71) did his best to lift the visitors, but they were eventually bowled out for 168.