A DISMAL 120-run defeat at the hands of Stourport-on-Severn means Droitwich Spa are 96 points adrift of safety in Worcestershire County League Division One.
Upon winning the toss, Droitwich inserted Stourport who found the going hard against the spin of Martyn Davies and the swing of Max Young.
Crucially though, the visitors did not lose early wickets and began to accumulate runs steadily as their confidence grew.
Opener Greg Massingham was particularly punishing on any bad deliveries as he made 88 and further momentum was added by an unbeaten 61 from Ryan Derrick as Stourport scored 240-6.
Derrick (3-11) and fellow opener Lee Waldron (4-20) then wreaked absolute havoc with the ball as Droitwich crumbled to 32-7.
Paul Bryan and Jordan Renau restored a modicum of self-respect with a late cameo of 30 from Jonny Keen pushing the Spa total to 107 before the last wicket fell in the 33rd over.
The Seconds beat the weather to extend their lead at the top of Division Two Second XI ahead of Saturday’s visit to fellow promotion-chasers Belbroughton.
A 97-run win at Oldswinford & Stourbridge Social, coupled with the abandonment of the clash between nearest rivals Belbroughton and Cookley, puts Spa 19 points clear with six matches to go.
After driving through a storm to Saturday’s match, it was somewhat surprising that play was able to get underway after only a 30-minute delay with James King wasting no time to put some runs on the board for Droitwich in the revised 45-over contest.
He made 72 and Carl Thomson added 44 as Spa posted 204-9.
In reply opening bowlers Karl Goddard and Dave Stephens cut through the Oldswinford top order to leave them 32-6 from which they never recovered.
Stephens claimed 4-20, Martin Woodward 3-23 and Karl Goddard 2-25.
The Thirds claimed a losing draw against Oldswinford in Division Five as they replied with 119-7 to their opponents’ 180-6.
Youngster Tom Hodgson notched his maiden half century for the Fourths, who lost by two wickets in a low scoring encounter against the same opponents in Division Five Second XI.
Josh Sinclair also grabbed 4-14 as Spa’s total of 131-6 proved insufficient.
On Saturday, the Firsts hosts Bewdley while the Thirds and Fourths take on Redditch.