SECOND-PLACED Emmbrook and Bearwood maintained their Division One promotion chances with a three-wicket win against bottom-of- the-table West Reading 2nds, writes Phil Brennan.

Having chosen to field the Bears took two early wickets, but Waseem Ayub (66) and captain Usman Ali (66) fought back as the hosts were bowled out for 194. Richard Cole (4-40) was the pick of the attack.

The chase was never certain, but Cole (26no) and Matt Howarth (40no) helped Emmbrook (198-7) home with a ball to spare.

Checkendon (153-9) beat Bradfield by one wicket in a thriller. Vikas Chib’s took 4-36 as Bradfield scored 152-9, and John Acland-Hood’s 54 proved vital in the chase despite the best efforts of Bradfield’s Jack Byrne (5-22).

Leaders Mortimer West End overcame Ibis Mapledurham by three wickets. Matt Jones (75no) led Mapledurham to 185-8 as Andy Trott (4-46) impressed with the ball, but a devastating spell from Luke Whiley (5-41) removed the Mortimer top four for 20 runs and in trouble.

However, captain Nick Kingston (74) and Steve Audsley (51) steadied the chase as West End prevailed.

Peppard Stoke Row 2nds (212-7) had to settle for a draw against Goring on Thames (166-9).

Richard Walker (90) and Gerry Bacon (57) helped PSR amass a strong total before Goring’s Captain Ollie Carrier (69) impressed, only for Under 16 Alfie Burnett (4-34) to storm through the middle order and force Goring to hold on.

Sulhamstead & Ufton 2nds cruised past Farley Hill by five wickets.

Duncan Greef top scored with 46 as Hill were bowled out for 147, and Matt Burrows (76no) helped Sully home in 32.2.

Premier Division leaders Sulhamstead edged to a dramatic four-run success against Berkshire County Sports to all but wrap up the title.

Chris Mercer (50no) led the visitors to 169-8, Umer Khalid (4-50) starring with the ball.

BCS were in trouble at 71-6 before Babar Butt and Saqib Hussain put on 64 to unsettle Sully, only for a brace of run outs seeing the hosts slide to 165 all out.

West Reading moved up to second with a straight-forward seven-wicket win at Ruislip Victoria.

Rehan Akram took incredible figures of 8-24 as RV were dismissed for 174, and Zafar Ali (62no), Kazam Kamal (42) and Taskeen Ahmed (46) completed the job.

Peppard Stoke Row earned a four-wicket victory at Sandhurst after 18-year- old debutant leg spinner Josh Perkins (4-15) kept the Camels to 146-9.

The visitors slipped to 72-6, but skipper Rich Ashton (40no) and Matt Hopper (51no from 33 balls) took PSR home.

Crowthorne and Crown Wood (172-9) held on for a winning draw against Welford Park (170-7).

Dan Cartledge (77) top scored for the Crows, while Will Herrington (44) continued his good form for their opponents.

Bottom-of- the-table Woodley managed just their second win of the season after a resounding 179- run victory over Woodcote. An unbeaten 114 from Aaqib Zaheer headlined Woodley’s 271-8, Kashif Ali also impressing with 66.

Woodcote were then bowled out for 92 as Ali shone again with the ball, taking 5-32, ably supported by Jag Grewal (4-55).

In Division Two, second-placed Shinfield reinforced their promotion chances after thrashing Warfield by 157 runs.

Shinfield made 226-9, Muhammad Hafeez (57) and Anuraag Shukla (57) joint top scorers, before Shukla returned 4-9 to skittle the visitors for 69.

Rock bottom Emmbrook and Bearwood 2nds (142) lost to Crowthorne and Crown Wood 2nds (143- 5) by five wickets.

Sai Rajopalan (90no) scored more than half the Bears’ total as Dan Partridge took 4-34, and Razavullah Shaik (47) helped the Crows home in 42 overs.

Woodley 2nds breezed to an eight-wicket success at Stratfield Turgis (122). Saranraj Prakasam (3- 18) was the pick of the Woodley attack before captain Upendra Deshpande (59no) sped his side to victory in 23.1 overs.

Twyford and Ruscombe only scored 133-9, but it proved enough for a 63-run win Hawley (70), Shiva Nagam (4-6) and Steve Beamish the destroyers-in- chief with the ball.

Division Three table-toppers West Reading 3rds were denied a win by Welford Park 2nds as opener Jacob McManus (72no) resisted their assault.

Fahad Raja (69) top scored in West Reading’s 220-6 before Welford closed on 148-8, McManus facing 128 balls.

Ruislip Victoria 2nds earned only their second win of the season against Bradfield 2nds. Half centuries from Mick Walker (53no), Abdi Ismail (61), and Waleed Iqbal (71) helped Ruislip to 245, and despite 58 from Jon Bartlett, Bradfield faltered to 133, Nunman Jamil (3-15) with the stand-out figures.

Knowl Hill registered a winning draw against Sandhurst. Julian Fernando (60) and Toby Cutler (72) starred as Knowl Hill made 244-7, but the Camels resisted on 171-5, Andrew Birch (50n) proving resolute.

Rock bottom Mortimer conceded their game against Purley on Thames 3rds.

Shinfield 2nds drew inevitably closer to the Division Four title and promotion, but, they will be frustrated with a winning draw against Falkland Development.

Shinfield scored 206-8 largely thanks to Harsha Kolla (58), and Falkland were reduced to 127-9 in their reply. Zeeshan Afridi top scored with 44.

Mortimer West End 2nds (195-8) were lost by eight wickets to Waltham St Lawrence 2nds (196-2) after a superb 110 not out from Asif Ali.

Manish Garg (75) had top scored for MWE in the first innings, as Zaheer Gujjar (4-10) shone with the ball.

West Reading 4ths fell apart with the bat as they lost by four wickets to promotion hopefuls Crowthorne and Crown Wood 3rds. Venkata Adapa (3-26) and Dipak Upwanshi (3-17) were effective as West Reading were all out for 82 and CCW (83-6) got home in 31.3 overs.

Emmbrook and Bearwood 3rds have withdrawn from the league, giving Sulhamstead 3rds 30 points from their scheduled tie.

Peppard Stoke Row 3rds won their Bye Week Challenge match by 85 runs against Binfield 3rds.

Rob Simmons (61no), Don Townsin (53no), and Hugh Asquith (44) saw Peppard to 204-4, and the visitors could only reach 119-9 as U14 Owen Simmons took 3-24 off his eight overs.