Richmondshire are in pole position to win the title after another convincing win, this time at Seaton Carew. They have a lead of just four points with only one game remaining.

Their remaining match is at home to Marske on Saturday, and the toss will be an important issue, as they could still win and lose the title by one point should their only challenger Great Ayton claim the maximum 25 points at Marton.

The Dalesmen recovered from the shock of losing two early wickets at Hornby Park.

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Skipper Gary Pratt made 45 from 39 balls and then Alston Bobb took centre stage and scored 118 off 119 balls, including 12 fours. Steven Mather hit a steady 37 from 60 balls in 239-8, declaring with 45 overs used. Jack Turnbull bowled well taking 4-84 and Danny Thomas returned 3-66.

Seaton never got going, with Craig Swainston claiming 3-24 and man of the match Bobb returning 4-37, to win by 121 runs, and crucially claim the 25 points.

Great Ayton beat Norton at Leven Park, by 62 runs. After losing two early wickets, courtesy of Ben Duncan’s opening spell of 4-49, they recovered with Chris Allinson scoring his second century of the season (103), alongside Pitigala Jeewantha (75), in 235-7 declared off 37 overs, with Mark Binks taking 4-76.

Norton batted reasonably well, with 40 from Craig Symington and an entertaining 56 from skipper David Cross. Pitigala Jeewantha with 6-61 and Joe Marsay 3-49, were too hot and they were all out for 173, off 44.2 overs.

Marton had to win at Darlington to keep in touch with the top two, but went down heavily by nine wickets to secure Darlington’s survival.

Marton were asked to bat first and collapsed to 31-5 and 60-8, with Jonathan Barnes taking 3-30 and Liam Coates 5-29, with only Muhammed Zahid showing any resistance with a fiery 31 not out, towards the end of the innings of 112 all out.

Nathan Wright with 43 not out and Muhammed Saad with 52 not out made batting look easy when they put on an unbroken 83 in 116-1.

Barnard Castle won at Stokesley to move into fourth after some excellent bowling from Tom Merryweather (5-32) and Simon Tennant (5-30). At 54-6, the home side were in real trouble. However, Sam Wilson with 34 runs and Harry Harding (24no), put on 53 together in 120 all out.

At 4-2, Stokesley had a chance, but an unbroken stand of 117 between James Quinn (67no) and skipper James Finch (50no) saw the home to victory by eight wickets.

Guisborough were relegated, alongside Norton, when they lost again, this time at Middlesbrough.

The Priorymen have lost their last four and with Hartlepool picking up form, the drop to Division One was fairly inevitable.

They made a paltry 52 all out at Acklam Park, with only Shanuka Dissanayake and Graham Murray making double figures, when they scored 18 apiece.

Ahsan Shrindal with 3-10 and Leigh Beaumont with an unplayable 5-2, did the damage, in 30.2 overs. Boro then knocked off the required runs, with the loss of two wickets (55-2).

Guisborough’s plight, meant that Pools survived the dreaded drop after a gritty draw at Marske. The home side racked up 252-4, with Saeed Bin Nasir scoring his fifth century of the season, 109 off 130 balls, including 10 fours and two sixes. Skipper Lee Hodgson made 58, putting on 123 for the second wicket and then Tom Urwin added 56 not out.

In reply, Pools managed to hang on at 199-9, claiming seven crucial points with Harsha Vithana (93) holding the innings together and 38 coming from James Ward in support. Sam Berry was the pick of the bowling, returning 3-46.