Bowes ton sees Fakenham seal Alliance league title

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Fakenham sensationally sealed the Dipple and Conway Opticians Norfolk Alliance Premier Division title with a game to spare on Saturday.

Prolific overseas player Chad Bowes scored another ton as Fakenham have an unassailable 40-point lead over second position Sprowston after beating visitors Old Buckenham CC at the weekend.

The away side set a challenging target of 243-3 in the heat, but the leaders got home with five wickets to spare thanks to South African Bowes keeping his cool in compiling an unbeaten 131.

The Highfield Lawn side hauled-in 21 points and now enter the East Anglian Premier Cricket League play-offs.

Sprowston needed a huge win at Diss, but the visitors were comprehensively beaten after setting 189-8 to lose by eight wickets.

Reigning champions Downham ensured mid-table respectability after they beat Ashmanaugh and Barton Wanderers (see Tuesday’s paper), while Stow and Swardeston A both won to ensure the battle to avoid the other relegation position would go to the final day.

Stow triumphed over Cromer after restricting their visitors to 192-9. Stow replied with 196-4 to complete a 22-point haul and they sit 13 points behind Swardeston A.

North Runcton are in pole position to claim the Division One title after a three-wicket success against Horsford A (see report).

Whether one or two go up in all the divisions will depend on how Fakenham get on in the play-offs.

In Division Three, Downham A lost against leaders Brooke A who compiled 243-4. Visitors Town were bowled out for 131.

Swaffham still harbour hopes of promotion by defeating hosts Sprowston A who they dismissed for 150 and passed with only three wickets down.

Will Pillinger top scored with an undefeated 64 for Division Six champions Bircham, who won the title last week. The toast of West Norfolk beat hosts Horsford B by seven wickets after skittling them for 118.