Twyford end Leighton’s title chances

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Leighton Buzzard kissed their Cherwell Division 1 title changes goodbye on Saturday as they lost by six wickets to Twyford.

The defeat means Leighton trail Thame by 93 with 75 points on offer in the remaining three matches.

But just three points separate them from Cumnor in third, so the battle for a top three spot is still in the offing.

And the teams will go toe-to-toe on the final day of the season, with Leighton on the road.

Leighton, playing at Bell Close, won the toss and decided to bat first.

They made a decent start with a 53 run opening partnership with Francis (25) punching drives through the covers and Callaghan (12) showing great patience.

Francis was lbw sweeping the spinner Afzal and Callaghan was comprehensively stumped as he wandered off down the wicket.

Whatmore (16) looked comfortable but was caught when he tried to loft the ball over midoff. Kempster (12) was caught at silly mid on but at 86-4 it was looking reasonable for Town.

Another half century partnership followed with Dan Scott (25) and Dave Roberts (31) plundering boundaries at will. However with the score on 141-4 Leighton suddenly fell apart as they lost six wickets for five runs in five overs.

Twyford’s spinners seemed to mesmerise the home batsmen and Leighton ended up on an inadequate 146 all out. All 10 wickets were taken by the visiting spinners with Afzal taking 4-41 and Jackson 4-53 .

Town made a promising start when Sam Roberts bowled Mahmood (6) and then trapped Sansome (0) leg before wicket.

However Afzal was in a punishing mood and with him leading the charge the Twyford score rattled along at 6 per over.

Deal (17) was trapped lbw by Lee Selfe and Afzal (76) was caught on the boundary by Adam Culley off the bowling of Francis.

Evans (30not out) and Tanveer (9no) saw the visitors home to a comfortable victory by 6 wickets with overs to spare.

Sam Roberts took 2-22, Selfe 1-59 and Francis 1-19 as Town get just 6 points for the efforts.

Meanwhile in Division 4, Leighton Buzzard 2nds picked up a vital victory in their bid to escape relegation as they beat Tiddington 2nds.

Town won the toss and opted to field first.

They made the best of starts when Yogesh Mistry took the wicket of the home captain Brooks (4) with the second ball of the match.

He quickly followed this up when Sam Janes caught Willis (1) and when Alan Priestley took the wicket of Ben Smith (11) the home side were in trouble at 26-3.

Mackie(27) was another Mistry victim as Town at last were holding onto every catching chance.

The middle order batsmen began to build a score for the home side with Elliott (17) Neil Smith (28) James (32) and Hurley (18) in the runs. But Town’s bowlers stuck to their task, the fielders held 6 catches and a smart stumping by Richard Raine left Tiddington with a final total of 169 all out

A major bowling effort from Leighton’s openers saw Priestley taking 4-41 from 17 overs and Mistry 3-34 from 14. There were also wickets for Andy Smith 2-44 and Janes 1-10.

But Leighton made a poor start losing Burfoot second ball of the innings then Jacob Turley (8) and Will Smith (7) quickly followed to leave them 22-3.

Chris Thompson (12) and Scott Clark (18) added useful runs but it was a 72 run partnership between Mistry (20) and Janes ) which really provided Town with an outside chance of victory.

Janes (66 not out) was in outstanding form bringing up his half century in just 34 minutes which included 5 fours and 3 sixes.

He held his end and with support from Gareth Benger (10) and Smith (9no) it was appropriate that Janes should strike the winning boundary four to take Leighton to 171-8.

Leighton take 25 points and the win lifts them from 10th to 8th position in the division with three matches remaining.