ASTWOOD Bank will be aiming to get back on track at home to Eastnor on Saturday after a second successive defeat dented their Birmingham League Division Three promotion hopes.
The fourth placed Sambourne Lane side went down by 56 runs at leaders Fordhouses and now trail the Wolverhampton side by 35 points and joint second placed Pershore and Streetly by 12 points.
After Fordhouses won the toss and elected to bat, Bank bowled well as spinner Dan Taylor took 5-50 and Tom Harris 2-36 to dismiss the hosts for 185 despite 63 from Alex McChristie.
Bank’s reply began well and they reached 34 without loss until Tom Pedley (24) became the first wicket to fall, but after that there was a regular fall of wickets as Kashif Hussain (4-24) shone.
At 101-8 the cause looked lost, although Andrzej Jagielski made a brisk 34 to inject some late hope, but once he was dismissed Bank soon slid to 129 all out.
BANK 2nds cemented top spot in Birmingham League Division One 2nd XI with an entertaining winning draw against visitors Coventry & North Warwickshire.
The hosts were put into bat and, despite seeing Paul Daws run out first ball following a tight call from the nimble Dave Price, they recovered well.
Captain Andy Williams made 46 but, at 98-4 at the drinks break, there was work to do.
This work was done in style by Paul Baker (76no) and Tom Shepherd (87no) who went about rebuilding the innings with some clever ones and twos initially, before accelerating near the end of the innings to lift Bank to 269-4 of their 50 overs.
Joel Haslam then struck in the first over of the visitors’ reply but free-scoring Dubai-born batsman Nagarjun Hedge arrived and made 42 off only 20 balls.
However, the ever-impressive Haslam took his vital wicket and, despite a 90-run partnership between Adam Simpson (56) and Arwand Barnard (36), Bank secured 16 points thanks to Josh Baker (4-72) and Muhammad Safyan (3-32) as the visitors had to bat out the final over to close on 247-9.
Bank 2nds now face a key game at second placed Kenilworth Wardens on Saturday.
Bank 4ths enjoyed a 30-run victory at Halesowen in Worcestershire League Division Four 2nd XI.
Mark Brind made a fine 57 and Jake Browning (33) and Mark Richardson (35) also contributed well in a total of 209 all out.
Brind then took 3-36 and Richardson and Tom Prescott two apiece to dismiss the hosts for 179.
The 4ths host Cleobury Mortimer on Saturday.
Bank 5ths were five-wicket winners over Badsey 2nds at Cookhill in Cotswold Hills League Division Seven.
The visitors made 109 all out in 32 overs as Nick Robinson, Richard Neal and Jack Neal all took two wickets.
There were senior debuts for James Browning who took a wicket and made a superb catch, Jude Hill (one wicket) and Paddy Duggan (two wickets and one catch).
The hosts reached 111-5 inside 37 overs to win thanks to a season’s best 28 from Martin Ward, 40 not out from Matt Hill and 20 from Duggan.