Old Hill 1st XI finally made it across the line on Saturday and became Premier Division Champions for the first time after their highly rated bowling attack (without Sam Wright) dismissed visiting Brockhampton CC 1st XI for 92 in the second innings to seal a comfortable win that once seemed extremely unlikely after they had slipped to 100-9 in the first innings.

Second placed Stourbridge 1st XI beat Chaddesley Corbett 1st XI by three wickets but are now an insurmountable twenty two points behind the Champions with just one match to go. Stourport-on-Severn 1st XI beat Bromyard 1st XI to remain third thanks to healthy contributions form Charlie Foley (5-24) and Craig Wood (52*) whilst fourth placed Pershore 1st XI lost to Astwood Bank 1st XI at Sambourne Lane.

However, with the possibility of three teams being relegated (subject to Old Hill 1st XI s performance in the B&DPCL Play Offs), the real battle for survival lies between four teams desperate not to finish in 10th place. Redditch 1st XI are favourites to avoid the drop as they would have to have a very poor game against Worcester Nomads 1st XI to finish 10th, whilst the other three possible candidates, Worcester Nomads 1st XI, Brockhampton 1st XI and Bromyard 1st XI (who play each other at the Parks) all need a win to survive.

Although being beaten by Ombersley 2nd XI (for whom Henry Wilde returned second innings figures of 5-23), Lye 1st XI were crowned Division One Champions after Pedmore 1st XI had to settle for a tie in an enthralling match at home to Halesowen CC 2nd XI which went all the way to the final ball of the match.

Elsewhere, Coombs Wood 1st XI beat Hagley 1st XI at Stewarts Road. Bryn Evans (70) helped Worcester 1st XI seal a comfortable four wicket win against Burghill, Tillington & Weobley 1st XI. Bewdley 1st XI continued their excellent second half form by recording a seven wicket win against Colwall 1st XI at Stowe Lane, a result that means Colwall 1st XI are in danger of the drop just six points ahead of eleventh placed Barnt Green CC 3rd XI who enjoyed a nine wicket win against basement side Bromsgrove 3rd XI who will need to beat Colwall 1st XI next week to stand any chance of avoiding the drop.

The race for the title and promotion is still well and truly alive in Division Two as the top three all enjoyed positive results. Will Maund (88) helped leaders Bartestree & Lugwardine 1st XI retain their seven point lead by setting up a comfortable victory against relegated Redditch 2nd XI. Himley 2nd XI sit just seven points adrift after consolidating second position with a solid seven wicket win against Astwood Bank CC 2nd XI and Alvechurch & Hopwood 1st XI ensured they kept themselves in the hunt for promotion by beating Enville 1st XI by a comfortable margin, however they need to overturn a fourteen point margin to second placed Himley 2nd XI in the final game of the season which looks like a gargantuan effort as they must travel to leaders Bartestree to achieve this.

Elsewhere in the division, Joel Cox (207) scored an excellent double century for fourth placed Bredon 1st XI in their win against relegated Harborne 3rd XI. Gurbhej Singh (159) led the way for Netherton 1st XI as they bounced back from last weeks defeat at the hands of Himley 2nd XI with a comfortable win against Kidderminster 2nd XI who must at least mirror the amount of points Enville 2nd XI get on Saturday to avoid the dreaded tenth place and finally, Tom Blunt (101*) scored a first innings century and Muhammad Mustafa (5-52) returned excellent second innings figures in Oldswinford 1st XIs home win against Cookley 1st XI.

Barnards Green 2nd XI secured the Division Three title on Saturday after dismissing Martley 1st XI cheaply and knocking the required runs of for the loss of three wickets. However, the race for promotion is still open as second placed Lye 2nd XI beat Avoncroft 1st XI by five wickets thanks largely to the first innings exploits of Ahsan Kaleem-Ahmed (6-19) who returned timely first innings figures at Hanbury Road which keeps them seven points ahead of chasing Belbroughton 2nd XI who had Will Pardoe (125*) to thank as his brisk undefeated second innings hundred help the visitors chase down over three hundred set by Netherton 2nd XI at Highbridge Road.

In short, Lye 2n XI must beat Old Elizabethans 2nd XI next week to ensure promotion as Belbroughton 1st XI face already relegated Old Vigornians 1st XI who lost to Feckenham 1st XI on Saturday and will be relegated along with Stourbridge 2nd XI who lost to Old Elizabethans 2nd XI, whilst in other match in the division, Himbleton 1st XI beat Brockhampton 2nd XI by a comfortable margin to guarantee their safety.

In Division Four Lawrence Neill (110) helped Stourport-on-Severn 2nd XIs to a win against Coombs Wood 2nd XI which means the West Worcestershire outlet need just two more points to secure the title when they visit second placed Rushwick on Saturday who will be looking to back up their nine wicket win against Five Ways Old Edwardians 1st XI with victory against the leaders as this is the only result that guarantees them promotion because third placed Old Hill 2nd IX sit just five points behind after beating Claverley 1st XI by five wickets at Sandford Park.

Elsewhere, Chaddesley Corbett 2nd XI inflicted defeated on fourth placed Worcester Nomads 2nd XI, a result that ended Nomads promotion hopes. Sudhir Prabhu (97) led the way for Harborne 3rd XI to secure a timely win against West Malvern 1st XI that moves them eighteen points clear of the relegation zone at a crucial time of the season and Raynaldo Estwick (91) led Bromsgrove 3rd XI to a one hundred and twenty run win against Romsley & Hunnington 1st XI.  

In Division Five Worcester CC 2nd XI hosted Droitwich Spa CC 2nd XI in a top of the table battle that saw the visitors electing to field first, reducing Worcester to a score of 223, Droitwich fell agonisingly short at 191 off their 45 overs. This result helped Worcester 2nd XI move to within one point of their opponents both of whom are now guaranteed promotion. Third placed Hagley and Astwood Bank enjoyed a high scoring game which saw Hagley squeeze out a 5 wicket win, chasing down Astwood bank’s 232 off of 38 overs, with contributions from Richard Sydenham’s 85 (103) and Joe Lennon’s electric 84 off of 49 deliveries.

At the other end of the Table, Colwall 2nd XIs four wicket loss to Bewdley 2nd XI ensures they face relegation into division six next season. Stourbridge 2nd XIs loss to Pedmore 2nd XI loss also puts them into a dangerous position sitting 15 points below Barnt Green and requiring 20 points and a poor result from Barnt Green to avoid demotion, who have a very important week upcoming.

At the top of the table in Division Six wins for Tenbury Wells 1st XI against Bromyard 2nd XI and Hanley Castle & Upton 1st XI against Cutnall Green 1st X has created a winner takes all match next week when both teams meet at the Glebe.

Whilst at the lower end of the table a crucial win for Old Vigornians 2nd XI against Belbroughton 2nd XI took them above Enville who now sit at the foot of the table and most likely now to be relegated as they are nineteen points adrift from safety. The battle to avoid the other relegation place then consumes three other teams Old Vigornians 2nd XI, Kempsey 1st XI and Alveley 1st XI who are not safe yet despite being thirteen points ahead of Old Vigornians who are just about clinging on.

Elsewhere in the division, Halesowen 3rd XI recorded a big win against Kidderminster 3rd XI thanks to John Aston’s (81) and Raqeeb Khan’s (64) which both contributed to their score of 247 off their 45 overs.

In Division Seven (North) Himley 3rd XI sealed the title and promotion with their fifteenth win of the season against Cookhill, whilst at the bottom of the table, Kidderminster 4th XI who are already relegated endured a devastating defeat against Stone 1st XI who racked up a monstrous 421 off their 45 overs, with Kiefer Hanman hitting an incredible 247 runs off just 119 balls!! Chris Harler also supported well as he retired not out on 124 off 112 balls.

This monster partnership of 350 for the 1st wicket partnership laid the foundations for a huge 206 run win as the home team were them beat out Kidderminster by 206 runs as Kidderminster are only capable of 215 off their 45 overs and finally, Five Ways Old Edwardians 2nd XI now require a miracle to avoid relegation as they remain 19 points from safety after losing to Halesowen 4th XI by eight wickets and need a win against in form Stone 1st XI next week to stand a mathematical chance of avoiding the drop.

In Division Seven South, Champions Harvington 1st XI beat Stourport-on-Severn 3rd XI to solidify their position at the top of the table. Second placed Burghill, Tillington & Weobley 2nd XI enjoyed a comfortable victory against Rushwick 2nd XI after Amy Maund (4-16) routed the home team in the second innings, third placed Birlingham 1st XI were beaten by Old Elizabethans 3rd XI and Ombersley 3rd XI beat Bartestree & Lugwardine in a low scoring tie.

Whilst at the bottom of the table a very close battle for relegation is unfolding as we see two teams separated by just two points meaning that next week’s fixtures are crucial for both. Stourport-on Severn 3rd XI who currently sit at the bottom of the table face Worcester 3rd XI who are out of range in ninth and Martley 2nd XI who were soundly beaten by Barnards Green 3rd XI sit two points above Stourport face Old Elizabethans 3rd XI who beat Birlingham 1st XI on Saturday to guarantee their safety and understand that anything less than a victory may lead to relegation subject to how Stourport-on-Severn 3rd XI do at Worcester.

Report submitted by Worcestershire County League