Oxfordshire had 22 balls at Dorset’s last pair but could not quite force victory in a thrilling West Division encounter which ended in a draw at Bournemouth.
Leading by 195 with five wickets in hand, Oxon took their overnight 214-5 to 329-8 before declaring and setting Dorset 312 to win in 76 overs.
The hosts made a bold fist of it and all three results were possible towards the end, before they settled for the draw on 281-9.
Chad Keegan hit 46 in Oxon’s second innings and the same player made an early breakthrough in Dorset’s reply when he had Michael Porter caught by Richard Cook.
Fellow opener Masoor Khan followed his first-innings century with 66, including ten fours, before he became one of three victims for skipper Luke Ryan.
At one stage, Dorset were up with the clock at six an over, with Jake Lintott and Luke Webb putting on 75, but both perished in the 40s as Oxon hit back through Keegan and off- spinner Jimmy Phillips.
When home captain Chris Park was out for 40, Dorset decided to end their run chase and play out time, leaving last pair Sam Thomson and James Hayman three overs to survive, which they did without alarms.
Ryan’s 3-95 gave him match figures of 10-173, while Keegan and Phillips also picked up three wickets apiece.
Latest Sport news
- Update: Former Oxford United teammates make glowing tribute to 'leader' Paul McCarthy
- Chris Maguire urges Oxford United to use agonising FA Cup defeat as play-off spur
- Oxford United fans' chat
- Oxford United head coach Michael Appleton disappointed by soft goals conceded at Middlesbrough
- John Lundstram humbled by massive Oxford United following at Riverside Stadium
- Aitor Karanka relieved after Middlesbrough edge past Oxford United
- FOOTBALL: Lee Henderson heads Oxford City to victory over Hemel Hempstead Town
- FOOTBALL: Didcot Town earn draw and Kidlington win, but North Leigh and Wantage Town suffer defeats
- FOOTBALL: George Nash earns Banbury United a point, but draw hampers play-off bid
- WEEKEND RESULTS: February 18-19