ASHMORE 170-8 (pts) lost to PORTLAND RED TRIANGLE 171-9 (pts) by one wicket
PORTLAND Red Triangle have sealed the Dorset Sunday League Division Two title and gained promotion for a second successive season.
Triangle extended their winning run to 17 matches out of 17 with a tight one-wicket run at mid-table Ashmore.
Batting first, Ashmore were restricted to 170-8 in their 40 overs, with a tight opening spell by Simon Proffitt (2-29) and three wickets apiece for spinners Scott Males (3-33) and Simon Barrett (3-34).
The island club’s top-order batsmen, who have scored freely all season, found Diment's pace and movement too much, and at one point, Triangle's reply was in deep trouble at 43-4.
Fortunately for Portland, versatile left-hander and vice-captain Tim Forshaw (45) led the recovery.
Twenty-one-year old Plymouth student Olly Whisker (38no), showed his growing authority when he joined Forshaw in a partnership of 38 for the sixth wicket.
After Forshaw was bowled by Trepass, 16-year-old Matt Barrett (31) and Males helped Whisker to inch the total to 168.
After Males was out, Diment returned, and accounted for two batsmen who normally bat much higher – the experienced and capable Barrett and skipper Price, both for ducks.
Last man George Munro held out with Whisker, and Triangle crossed the line with 11 balls to spare.
Skipper Gareth Price said that experienced players such as For-shaw, Chris Leake and Gary Randell had helped turn the young talent which had emerged from the club’s vigorous youth programme into genuine match-winners, and that this was supported by a strong team ethos.
He said: “This win, against capable opponents on their home territory, showed that the team has the strength in depth needed to compete with the best teams in the county in the top-flight next season.
“The club has continued to make significant investment in its ground equipment, so that Division One visitors will see a much improved playing surface at the club’'s home ground next year.
“This investment has been possible through the hard work of fundraisers, led by Adrian Wilson and supported by the local community.”
Triangle’s final match sees them take on second-place challengers Sherborne at Reforne today (1.30pm).