SESSAY moved three points clear at the top of the Pilmoor Evening Cricket League first division with victory at Sheriff Hutton Bridge while nearest rivals Newburgh were losing by two wickets at Clifton Alliance.

With three matches left, Sessay are favourites to take the title but have a difficult run-in, including a four-pointer with Acomb, who still retain hope, and a potential decider with Newburgh.

Clifton also kept their hopes alive, while at the bottom, Alne look sure for the drop, and will almost certainly be replaced by Dringhouses or Easingwold, who meet tonight.

An outstanding unbroken opening partnership set up Sessay’s latest win.

Mark Jackson made 104 not out, including 13 fours and four sixes, reaching his century in the 17th over, and Stuart Peirse 77 not out, including 12 fours.

Sessay closed on 193-0, the final 11 overs of the 18 yielding 150.

SHB responded with 121-6, Dave Bradshaw making 54 and Ben Harrison 31 not out.

Newburgh lost ground in a low-scoring loss at Clifton Alliance.

James Banks (21) was their only batsman to make progress as Will Moll (3-12) and Dave Skaith (5-9) bundled them out for 61 in 14 overs.

Alliance also found batting difficult as Jason Sargent claimed 5-14, but Jamie Butt (31no) played the match-winning innings and they won with three overs in hand.

Acomb kept their hopes alive with a narrow victory at Thirsk.

Joe Dale (75no) and Jonny Rawsthorne (27no) took them to 138-3, Thirsk responding through Stuart Christon (58) before closing on 133-7, Christian Burton’s 2-29 helping to keep Acomb in the ascendancy.

Alne’s woes continued as Helperby’s George Swiers (3-20), T Messenger (3-7) and S Webster (3-16) bowled them out for 52, the visitors winning by nine wickets.

Dringhouses stayed top of division two with victory over Huby.

Jake Fox (35) helped Huby post 99-6, but Andrew Kenyon made 51 retired as Dringhouses won at 100-4.

Easingwold kept up the pressure when beating neighbours Raskelf.

Austin Baker (40no) and Matthew Sigsworth (25) led a consistent batting show which saw Raskelf reach 117-3, but Easingwold raced to victory at 118-2 in only the 11th over, openers Dan Copeland (44) and Max Cosgrove (52 ret) setting up the win.

Rowntrees and Huntington had a welcome four-run win at Crayke.

Josh de Silva (50 ret) and Matthew Cressey (24) took them to 120-7, Mark Hutchinson and Jack Walker each returning 2-18.

In reply, Hutchinson made 32 and George Pears 28 not out, but de Silva took 2-25 and Crayke’s recent good run stalled when they failed to get the 11 runs needed from the final over.

Sheriff Hutton conceded their fixture with Civil Service.