Diss pair Tooke and Wilby put on superb partnership of 236

Dereham batsman Dan Lake facing Topcroft's Greg Rostron. Picture: Ian Burt

Dereham batsman Dan Lake facing Topcroft's Greg Rostron. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Diss produced a truly dominant performance with the bat in the Norfolk Alliance on Saturday – but it still wasn't enough to secure a third straight Premier Division win.

Stow could do nothing to stem the flow of runs as their visitors went on the attack to post a daunting total of 325 for three. A partnership of 236 between David Tooke (155) and James Wilby (101) was the cornerstone of a magnificent effort.

From that position the home side knew they couldn't win the game, but they were determined not to lose it and a solid rearguard action saw them finish on 176 for eight.

The match between leaders Fakenham and defending champions Downham Town also finished in a draw, and an exciting one at that. Fakenham were bowled out for 217 (Chad Bowes 76) and all results were possible going into the closing stages. Downham eventually had to settle for a 13-point haul to their opponents' 14 after finishing on 203-9, with Patrick Yates unbeaten on 104.

Brooke remain the leaders' closest challengers after maintaining their excellent start since promotion by making it four wins in five attempts. Their latest victims Cromer are now on a run of four straight defeats – but they gave a decent account of themselves, putting together a decent total of 256 for seven. It was another big test for the new boys, but they passed it with flying colours as they got home with five wickets to spare. Mike Jones led the way with an unbeaten 130 that took his season's tally up to 389, at an average of more than 100.

Old Buckenham got back to winning ways, and moved back up to third as a result, as they bowled Ashmanhaugh and Barton Wanderers out for 106 after making 182, while there was a thrilling finish as Swardeston A took on Sprowston.

Chasing a total of 222 Sprowston got home with just one wicket to spare to register a third win in four games. The last-wicket pair of Harry Dalton (75 not out) and Tom Rose shared an unbeaten partnership of 31 in 3.2 overs to see the visitors home.

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North Runcton kept the pressure on Division One leaders Lowestoft with another emphatic win. The west Norfolk side are now just nine points off top spot after bowling out Great Witchingham A for 100 and then getting home by eight wickets.

Lowestoft won again, but didn't have things all their own way as they lost seven wickets chasing down Garboldisham's modest total of 119.

Acle remain third after a comfortable 95-run win over a Beccles side who had won their previous two fixtures. Josh Rowe (90) top scored.

Norfolk Alliance new boys Martham and Bircham are both settling down well in their new surroundings.

Martham remain unbeaten in Division Five after a winning draw against Lowestoft Town A on Saturday while Bircham have now won three of their four matches in Division Six following a tense victory over Diss A.

Martham piled up an impressive 247 for nine, with Alex Sayer scoring 77 and Louis Smith unbeaten on 55, but were then frustrated by their visitors, who shut up shop to finish on 115 for seven.

Bircham looked set for a comfortable ride after dismissing Diss for just 96 (Shaun Fisher 4-14) but there were more than a few anxious moments before they finally secured a two-wicket win.

Division Two leaders Norwich A had to work hard to secure another win at Bradenham. The hosts were bowled out for 191, with Jonny Bidwell contributing 60 and Lewis Sexton taking 5-60. And that was almost enough, with Norwich overhauling their target with one wicket in hand.

Second-placed Hethersett and Tas Valley were frustrated by Old Buckenham A who batted out for a draw when faced with a target of 209 for four (Ian Bryce 54).

Swaffham continue to set a blistering pace in Division Three. They now have five wins and 114 points to their name after skittling Acle A out for 131 and knocking off the runs required for the loss of just three wickets. Jasper Payne shone with both bat and ball, following up his 81 with figures of 4-24.

Nick Freeman made 108 for North Runcton A in the same section, but his side had to settle for a draw against Brooke A.

Dereham A's Ryan Fitt had an afternoon to remember at Topcroft A, scoring 135 to help his side to a 118-run victory in Division Six.

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