HELPERBY dented Sessay’s title hopes in division one of the Pilmoor Evening Cricket League thanks to a thrilling three-run win.

Only four games were played across both tiers as the season moved into its second half and, worryingly, two games were conceded.

In the top-flight cracker, Helperby’s innings was held together by Tom Messenger, who was out in the penultimate over for 40.

Dan Marston earlier made 34 in a second-wicket partnership of 49, while for Sessay Stephen Langstaff took 2-20 and there were tidy spells from Arron Bumby and George Till as the hosts closed on 110-6.

Paul Flintoff and Naveen Kavikara each made 24 when leaders Sessay replied and they looked set for victory at 70-2 with eight overs to go.

However, good fielding, which effected two run-outs, and tidy bowling, with Dan Marston conceding only nine runs from three overs at the end, saw the visitors fall

short on 107-9 with Brendon Banks (2-27) and Alfie Grasby (3-26) having the

best returns for the hosts.

Clifton Alliance moved joint top with a win over Easingwold after another close contest.

Liam Hope-Shackley with 49 and 28 from Nic Hindle helped them to 135-7, Sheraz Kasi keeping Easingwold in the game with 4-26.

Dan Copeland led the Easingwold reply with an unbeaten 68 and Max Cosgrove supported with 31 but the visitors never quite kept up with the asking rate and

could only make 10 of the 21 runs they needed from the last over, closing on 125-3.

Sheriff Hutton Bridge were without a fixture, and Newburgh were also rendered inactive for the second time this season when Dringhouses conceded.

Thirsk still lead division two after winning at Raskelf, but Sheriff Hutton kept up the pressure with a victory at Alne.

Thirsk made 125-4 with James Trueman retiring after reaching 50 and James Wilkinson making 44, while C Brown bowled a tidy spell to return 2-15.

When Raskelf replied, Harry Ellis made 36, but Sam Howes, with 3-24, swung the game Thirsk’s way and the response closed well short on 76-6, Tom Spence having got them behind the asking rate by conceding only 11 runs from his five overs.

Sheriff Hutton continue to breathe down the leaders’ necks after a 36-run triumph at Alne.

Matthew Maltby (24) and Geoff Schofield (32 not out) did most to take them to 140-7, despite the efforts of G Stevens and C Spence, who each took 2-36, and H Stevens, who returned 2-17.

The Alne reply saw Spence make 43 but Matthew Maltby took 2-4 and J Rushworth 2-9 as it closed on 104-7.

Rowntrees & Huntington were unable to raise a side and conceded the points to Crayke.