Challow & Childrey won a thriller by nine runs at home to Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts on Saturday and so move above their opponents in the Cherwell League Division 2 table.
Nondies needed 11 to win from the final over, with experienced skipper Mark Strong’s and an injured Chris Day at the crease.
But they managed only a single before Strong was caught behind to hand Challow maximum points.
After electing to bat, the home side had started brightly through opener Ryan Gordon (31), but he fell in Strongs first over and Nondies wrestled back control. However, Challow plundered 41 from the last six overs to reach 195-8.
Luke Stutter top-scored with 36 for Challow, while Strong returned 6-53. Nondies were well-placed while Pablo Mukherjee (44) and Owen Venables (38) were togethe
r. But the match was back in the balance after Mukherjee was stumped and then the big-hitting Venables fell to an outstanding catch on the boun-dary by a leaping Alex Lynch.
Nondies suffered another setback when Chris Day had to retire hurt, and they were left requiring 28 from the final three overs with four wickets in hand.
Day returned to the crease after the fall of the ninth wicket, but Strong perished to leave Challow, for whom Olly Dimbylow took 4-32, celebrating after dismissing the visitors for 186.
Challow & Childrey 25, Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts 6
David Dyer notched 111 as Abingdon Vale racked up 210 at Bledlow Village, the club’s highest score of the season by far.
Veteran opener Tom Pollard scored 37, while Mark King claimed 3-41. The division’s most prolific batting line up then went up against its most miserly bowlers, with the latter coming out on top.
Adam Mould (47) and Charlie Downes (43) got starts, but seamer Graham Charlesworth (6-21) and spinner Paul White (3-42) worked their way through the card to reduce Bledlow to 136 all out.
Bledlow Village 5, Abingdon Vale 25
Martin Shepherd hit a superb 142 not out to cement his place as the highest run scorer in the Cherwell League’s modern history.
Shepherd is the only batsman to pass 9,000 league runs since the Cherwell was reorganised in 1994.
His effort took Kingston Bag-puize to 220-8 at home to Chearsley in Division 4 and overshadowed Ken Baker’s figures of 7-64. Matt Warner (4-32) and Ben Jefferis (4-36) then dismissed the visitors for 143.
Kingston Bagpuize 25, Chearsley 5
Didcot stay top after edging Buckingham Town 2nd.
Ben Stafford hit 51 while David Slade took 3-33 and Jordan Morrison 3-36 in Town's competitive 176 all out.
Ian Demain (47) and Simon Pritchard (32) then steered Didcot towards 177-7. Didcot 25, Buckingham Tn 2nd 10
Wallingford were indebted to Ben Denton (64) for their 167 all out at home to East Oxford. Ali Malik (4-37) and Ejaz Khan (3-40) took wickets at regular intervals.
The visitors then used only 31.1 overs in reaching 168-5, with Man-zoor Abbasi (34) and Mursaleen Siddiqi (32) on song.
Wallingford 8, East Oxford 25
Promotion-chasers Abingdon Vale 2nd and Oxford 3rd lost ground on the Division 5 leaders after playing out a draw.
Oxford’s 162-9 featured 44 by Mark Sheehan and a spell of 3-19 from Jason Cardy. Sam Chilvers (63) and Andrew Price (32) kept Vale interested, but Gareth Langley (3-18) and Mark Murfett (3-44) kept them to 143-8. Abingdon 2nd 8, Oxford 3rd 15
Abingdon Vale 3rd suffered a comprehensive seven-wicket defeat against Long Marston 2nd.
Dennis Lanham top-scored for Vale with 42 as they were dismissed for 115, Conor Dale taking 4-25. Long Marston eased home on 119-3.
Abingdon 3rd 4, Long Marston 2nd 25
Kingston Bagpuize 2nd just fai-led to beat Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts 3rd.
Harrison Ward (82) led Kingston to 187-7, while Nondies were struggling at 153-9 at the close after a spell of 4-28 from Phil Hickman.
Oxford & Bletchingdon 4th 3rd 5, Kingston Bagpuize 2nd 18
In Division 10, fine bowling by Ben Cox (5-12) shot out Shipton-under-Wychwood 4th for 55 to set up a six-wicket success for Challow & Childrey 3rd.
Challow & Childrey 3rd 25, Shipton 4th 4