ONCE again rain was the order of the day in the Hunters York & District Senior League premier division.

The only crumb of comfort was that this week it came later in the day, at least affording some cricket for both players and those spectators hardy enough to venture out.

The fixture list – already shortened with York and Malton & Old Malton having played their game earlier in the season to free up Clifton Park for the forthcoming County Championship match – was further truncated when the match between Studley Royal and Easingwold was called off prior to the start following a week of almost constant rain and the threat of more to come.

This latest setback puts the would-be visitors among a group of five teams who have now lost more games to the weather this year than they have completed, with just two rounds of matches to go before the season reaches the half-way point.

Folkton & Flixton won the only game not to fall victim to the rain, a four-wicket win at home to Sheriff Hutton Bridge lifting them up two places to third in the table.

Connor Stephenson (3-36) and Tom Norman (3-37) pegged back the visitors' scoring, although it was Jamie Nesfield (2-40) that picked up the wicket of Harry Sutcliffe who top scored with 38 in a total of 162.

The hosts found themselves in trouble in the early stages of their reply as Nadeem Shefta (3-41) reduced them to 28-4 but, after Jake Hatton had made 24, Will Norman (59) and Marley Ward added 85 for the sixth wicket, Ward finishing unbeaten on 31 to see his side over the line.

Joe Dale became the competition’s leading run-scorer with an unbeaten 96 at The Green where second-placed Acomb were taking on Beverley Town.

His fourth score over 50 this season came in a total of 258-5 which included 38 from opener William Wade and 46 from skipper Matthew Dale.

Matthew Saint finished with two wickets but at a cost of 76. However, in the end all four players’ efforts counted for little as rain halted the game at the half-way stage.

The game at the Recreation Ground between leaders Driffield Town and hosts Pickering followed an almost identical pattern to the one at The Green.

This time it was the visitors who batted first and contributions from Mark Goddard (42), Grant Halder (32) and an unbeaten 32 from Jamie Greavson helped them post a total of 218-9, Tim Whincup the pick of the bowlers with 3-48.

The home side's innings in reply lasted just two overs, four runs coming before rain curtailed play.

The bottom two met at Selby Road with both likely viewing the match as a potential opportunity to score a second victory in what is proving to be a challenging campaign. In the end the weather was the only winner.

Opener Simon Webb (48) top scored for the home side, narrowly missing out on a half-century before becoming one of a brace of wickets for Callum Hellwig (2-47). The same bowler also accounted for Joshua Watson who made 39.

The other notable contribution with the bat came from Mark Murphy who reached 42 as the home side closed on 205-8, which turned out to be the end of the action.

Whitkirk will have another a chance to kick-start their season next weekend against fellow strugglers Pickering, while Hull Zingari face a sterner looking challenge as they travel to Folkton & Flixton.