Oakham Cricket Club are crowned Leicestershire League Division One champions after beating Uppingham Town
Promoted Oakham Cricket Club capped a sensational season by being crowned Leicestershire League Division One champions on Saturday.
They defeated near neighbours Uppingham Town by six wickets to pip long-time leaders Newtown Linford to the league title by just three points.
Talismanic opener Wes Durston and the talented Rob Taylor produced a match-winning 150-run partnership for the third wicket which laid the foundations for Oakham's title triumph.
Oakham had won the toss and put Town into bat in the crucial clash at Castle Hill, but were soon on the back as Uppingham openers Jamie Dumford and Ben Farnsworth dominated the early exchanges.
They shared a superb 107-run opening partnership with skipper Dumford hitting 65 and Farnsworth thumping 69.
Charlie Baker finally found the breakthrough when he bowled Dumford after a 72-ball innings which included 11 fours and two sixes.
The Oakham opening bowler then followed that up quickly by having Jamie Richardson caught by Durston for three.
Mark Cox had just reached double figures when he was bowled by Shaun Morris to leave Uppingham on 133-3.
Dan Snaith joined Farnsworth and they added a further 40 runs before Taylor took out Snaith for 25.
Farnsworth then followed six runs later after being bowled by Durston to leave Uppingham on 179-5.
Sam Hodson and Danny Dumford then came together and enjoyed an unbroken half-centry stand for the sixth wicket.
Hodson was 25 not out and Dumford unbeaten on 22 as Uppingham closed out their 45 overs on 229-5.
Baker was the pick of the Oakham bowlers with 2-47 from nine overs while Morris and Taylor conceded just 29 and 34 runs respectively off similar spells.
Uppingham then enjoyed some early success in the Oakham reply as Danny Dumford delivered a couple of early wickets for the hosts.
He bowled Cameron Flowers for 12 and then struck again next ball to trap Chris Larsen leg before which left Oakham on 25-2.
Taylor snuck a single to deny Dumford his hat-trick before building a superb stand with Durston which moved Oakham to the brink of victory.
Their 150-run partnership saw Durston hit nine fours and a six in his run-a-ball 90 while Taylor thumped nine fours and four sixes in his 89 which came off just 62 deliveries.
Taylor was eventually caught by Danny Dumford off the bowling Scott Green, but his departure left Oakham needing just 55 runs from 20 overs.
Sean Cowley added a further 52 runs for the fourth wicket with Durston until the Oakham opener was caught by Richardson off Toby Rees.
However, Oakham needed just six runs for victory and Shyam Lakhani sealed their championship success in style with a huge hit which cleared the boundary.
The success made it a double title-winning campaign for the Lime Kilns side who were also crowned Rutland League Division Three champions on a Sunday.
Their Saturday second team also finished well-placed in Division Five East of the Leicestershire League after taking third spot.
They completed their campaign on Saturday with a 76-run home success over Market Overton.
Oakham made 206-7 from their 45 overs before bowling Marko out for 130 in their reply.
More by this authorJames Bedford