TIDDINGTON romped to a 129-run victory at Dinton to take over at the top of Cherwell League Division 1 with just two matches remaining.

The victory puts them eight points clear and on course for the title, with their final matches at home to already-relegated Horspath 2nd next week and away to Abingdon Vale on the final day.

Opting to bat first after winning the toss, Tiddington racked up an impressive 237-9 from their 53 overs.

Chris Goodman was the star of the show, his knock of 98 from 102 deliveries containing ten fours and two sixes.

He was well-supported by Jon Talbot (37), while Dinton’s Faisal Ali claimed 5-43.

Dinton, who were top coming into the match, never looked likely to get close to Tiddington’s total, and subsided to 108 all out, Neil Smith taking 3-14.

A lower-collapse left Abingdon Vale clinging on for a draw against Banbury 2nd – but by denying their rival maximum points, they all-but ended their visitors dwindling title hopes.

With Vale chasing Banbury’s total of 175, the home side appeared to be cruising at 152-4.

But a cluster of five wickets for 13 runs meant they had to battle out for a draw at 166-9.

Banbury opted to bat first and made a steady start as Tom Bartlett and Ollie Morgan shared 40 for the first wicket.

But Banbury slipped to 80-4 and although captain Justin Lambden steadied the ship with a fluent 53, he regularly lost partners, with left-arm spinner Paul White the pick of the attack.

His figures of 4-35 from 15.3 overs took him to 700 career wickets in the Cherwell League.

Banbury were bowled out in their final over and Vale appeared in complete control as they reached 117-2, Amith Premkumar opening up with a fine 49.

But the introduction of young spin duo Jamie Curtis and George Tait turned the tide in Banbury’s favour.

Leg-spinner Curtis took 3-34 from 14 overs, while Oxfordshire Under 17 skipper Tait claimed 3-43 from 12.

This saw Vale slip to 165-9 – still 11 runs from victory – but White and Graham Charlesworth remained resolute to deny Banbury the win.

Long Marston kept up the pressure on Tiddington, at the same time condemning Horspath 2nd to the drop with a five-wicket victory.

Horspath’s season of woe was summed up with a sorry batting display which saw them slump to 94 all out in the 39th over, only Jehan Mohammed (31) getting going, while Jeremy Smith took 4-40.

Hosts Marston needed just 24 overs to reach the target as Smith (40) led them to 97-5.

Defending champions Aston Rowant 2nd are likely to be the second relegated team after they crashed to a 140-run defeat at home to Cumnor.

Will Bull struck 90, Alex Hodder-Williams 55 and Harry Ackland 54, which allowed Cumnor to declare on 278-7 in 52 overs, Sasha Barras taking 4-61.

Tim Morgan hit 58 in Rowant’s reply, but they were nowhere near troubling Cumnor as they slumped to 138 all out, Max Mannering claiming 3-19.

Tom Costley’s fine all-round display helped Oxford Downs to a draw at home to Twyford.

Twyford were bowled out for 177, Shabaz Alam top-scoring with 76 and Costley taking 5-44.

Downs had 53 overs to chase the target, but they batted out for the draw at 160-7, Costley leading the reply with 60 not out and Bilal Afzal returning 4-27.