With Eastwood’s first XI enjoying a blank weekend, all attention turned towards the second team who secured their promotion back to Division E with a clinical six wicket victory over relegation-threatened Chilwell.
Eastwood skipper Dave Summers won the toss and had little hesitation in asking Chilwell to bat first, which proved to be an inspired decision as Summers and Dwayne Buckley shared the first four wickets to fall as Chilwell struggled against the new ball.
Hitesh Godhaniya chipped in with a brace of victims and Shaun Stocks continued his recent good form with the ball, ripping out Chilwell’s tail with a spell of three wickets for 28 runs.
Chilwell only managed 113 before being bowled out, a score which was boosted by some sloppy fielding and dropped catches by Eastwood, save for Steve Dockrell who took three catches behind the stumps.
Eastwood suffered early losses in their pursuit, with James Marshall and Tony Coupe back in the pavilion before the score passed 30.
However this brought Bryan Towle to the crease, and he, after surviving a few early scares, enhanced his image as a cool-headed finisher with an unbeaten 41 to see Eastwood home without too much further upset.
The result saw Eastwood officially promoted from Division F, and they must keep winning until the very end of the season to have any chance of taking the title away from Kinoulton..
The third team did their own promotion aspirations no harm at all with a six wicket victory away at Kirkby Portland.
In a match showing remarkable similarities to the second XI’s, Eastwood also bowled out their opposition for 113, with the opening bowlers ripping through Kirkby’s top order as they struggled along to 59 for 6 at the halfway point of the innings.
Jim Severn (18 runs) and Liam Dudley (21) tried to bring Kirkby back into the contest with a stand of 38 for the seventh wicket, but Ryan Elliott brought the partnership to an end with a great throw in the field to run Dudley out.
After Dudley’s departure Eastwood wasted little time in dismissing the remaining batsmen.
Sixteen-year-old Jake Humphries took three wickets for just 18 runs for Eastwood, with Greg Hatherley and Ryan Esson taking two apiece.
Eastwood’s response started pretty badly as they found themselves 4 for 2 thanks to some fine early pressure from Steve Bestwick and Dudley.
Elliott steadied the ship with an unbeaten 59 and Ben Grainger added 28, his top score of the season, to help Eastwood to their seventh win of the campaign which sees them move back into second place in Division P and within touching distance of leaders Kinoulton.