SHERIFF Hutton Bridge were confirmed as the Pilmoor Evening Cricket League division one champions after their narrow win at Clifton Alliance.

The victory in the only top flight fixture to be completed means that they cannot be overhauled even though there are three rounds of fixtures remaining.

Alliance batted first as they hosted the runaway leaders. Sam Grant’s 56 set up their 116-6, and Grant also featured in the second innings as Bridge were made to work hard for their victory.

His 3-10 included a hat-trick and, with Jack Heartshorne taking 3-45, Bridge were indebted to Rob Stevens for his 45 to get them within reach of their target before Ben Harrison’s 18 not out saw them seal their second title in the last three seasons.

Rain arriving in the early evening prevented any play at Newburgh, where Sessay were the visitors, and only just over 10 overs play was possible at Helperby where Thirsk were the visitors.

Helperby had made a promising start against Thirsk before rain had the final say in that fixture, S

Baker’s 40 having helped them to 72-2 in the 11th over.

Play was all set to start at Newburgh but the weather’s cruel sense of timing meant the players left the middle before a ball was bowled.

In division two, the Crayke versus Dringhouses fixture suffered a similar fate, but play was possible at Sheriff Hutton and, with the hosts beating Alne, Sheriff are now the only side that can overhaul Dringhouses.

Leaders Dringhouses were in action at Crayke, where the hosts batted first and had reached 73-7 in the 14th over when the rain got the upper hand.

Paul Barton had made 24 and John Dey was 19 not out, with Jacob Green having taken 3-15 and Jacob Rook 2-14.

Sheriff Hutton kept alive their mathematical chances of overhauling Dringhouses with a win over Alne.

Tom Bews, with an unbeaten 48, and Richard Reynolds, with 21, did most to take Sheriff to 115-4, Ryan Raper having the best return for Alne with 2-16.

When Alne replied, I Otterburn top-scored with 20, but Ian Bews (3-11) and Joe Schofield (3-15) put Sheriff on top as Alne were all out for 90.