PORTLAND RT 245 (20pts) beat STALBRIDGE 188 (9pts) by 57 runs

PORTLAND Red Triangle secured their status in County Division One for the 2024 season with a 57-run victory over Stalbridge at Reforne.

Matt Randell’s men needed to win and hope Beaminster, in ninth, suffered a heavy defeat at Chalke Valley.

And with Beaminster losing by eight wickets in Bowerchalke, Triangle have wrapped up safety as they lie 21 points above the drop zone with only 20 to play for on the final weekend this Saturday.

Triangle’s victory followed a successful method seen in previous seasons, winning the toss, batting first and putting on a big score.

READ MORE: Witchampton beat Portland Red Triangle by 109 runs

Openers Callan Laws (21) and Matt Barrett (31) got Portland off to a great start before Korey Causer (4-54) brought about their demise.

Dave Adkins (76) and Randell (36) continued the heavy scoring and a late 39 from the improving Eddie Moles pushed Portland onto 245 all out.

Stalbridge made good progress in pursuit of 246, James Lewis (45) and Ralph Dunne (31) building to 94-0 before the former lofted a catch to Laws off Jack Marsh (2-36).

Rich Samuel (2-38) and Randell (4-32) reduced the visitors to 132-6 and after Simon Sweatman fell for 28 of 25 balls, Portland sewed up the win to preserve their Division One status in style.

Speaking to Echosport, Randell said: “It’s something we wanted to get done before the last game of the season.

“We looked to go out, attack and if it came off we’d have a great opportunity to defend it.

“We went out swinging as hard as we could a lot of the time, take the game on and enjoy ourselves.”

Portland’s second string lost to Puddletown Seconds by 46 runs in Division Five.