A SWASHBUCKLING century from Ash Fearnall secured a second successive Worcestershire County League Division One victory for Droitwich as they beat Burghill, Tillington & Weobley by four wickets.
After winning the toss and inserting the opposition, Spa were on the front foot from the off as Burghill slumped to 10-4 in the face of some superb bowling from Phil Thomas and Max Young who both exploited the helpful conditions.
Ben Parkinson and Barney Morgan then repaired the early damage before the former became the first of three victims for Martyn Davies.
While Morgan held firm for an excellent 92 not out, his team-mates holed out to a mix of poor shots and great fielding as Thomas mopped up with 5-57.
Chasing 169 to win, Droitwich’s reply started at quite a pace and the score passed 50 from eight overs before Davies holed out at long off for a forceful 30.
His opening partner Fearnall continued the momentum as 100 came up in just 15 overs, before the home side managed their usual trick of losing quick wickets as four batsman trudged back to the pavilion to leave the game finely poised.
However, Burghill could find no way past Fearnall who stroked an array of imperious shots and, with the help of the dogged Paul Bryan, took Spa to the brink of victory before being dismissed for a brilliant 101.
In the reverse Seconds fixture, top-of-the-table Spa suffered only their third Division Two Second XI defeat of the season.
However, thanks to other results, their league lead was cut by just two points.
Spa recovered well from 1-2 to post 231-8 courtesy of Ash Walton (35), Carl Thomson (51), Karl Goddard (65) and Adam Shaw (40).
Burghill’s opening pair of Ryan Knight and Greg Penning then put on 190 for the first wicket before the former was dismissed by Sankey for 77 and, although Martin Woodward claimed two quick wickets, Penning completed his century and finished 112 not out to clinch a seven-wicket win.
An alarming batting collapse saw the Thirds soundly beaten by 106 runs by Pershore in Division Five.
Five wickets fell for no runs as Spa capitulated from 104-4 to 104-9 as Archie Oxley returned 5-21 for the visitors.
In a thrilling last over win, the Fourths defeated already crowned Division Five Second XI champions Pershore by three wickets.
The hosts were restricted to 157-8, thanks mainly to a superb spell of 4-21 from Paul Foster.
After the loss of several early wickets in reply, Tom Goss once again stepped up to the plate for Droitwich and he was ably supported by son Nick to put Spa back in the game.
Following the father and son’s dismissals for 49 and 29 respectively, a Paul Cowlard cameo of 20 and a mature 17 not out from Danny Mazgajczyk got their side over the line with five balls to spare.
On Saturday the Firsts visit Colwall and Bromyard are the visitors to St Peter’s Fields to take on the Seconds.
The Thirds and Fourths play their final league games against Romsley.