OXFORD Downs made the best of conditions as they beat Abingdon Vale by five wickets in Division 1.

Downs’ skipper Was Mehmood had no hesitation in opting to bowl with damp conditions confronting the teams.

And the decision was soon rewarded as opening pair Johnny Law and Matt Woods removed Luke Maslen for a duck. And after Law removed Terry Groom, and then key man Joe Butcher first ball, Vale were in big trouble.

Paul Butcher, promoted from the 2nd XI, did his best to stake a regular first-team place with an unbeaten 60, sharing a half-century stand with David Murphy, the only lower-order batsman to reach double figures.

Law finished with figures of 4-53 from 17 overs, while Woods took 3-33.

Harry Sutton wrapped up the tail with 3-17 as Vale were bowled out for 128 in the 46th over.

In reply, Downs lost openers Mehmood and George Sandbach cheaply.

With Will Watts being dismissed with the score on 48, Vale sensed an opening, particularly when James Ellwood followed for nine.

But Frankie Crouch steadied the ship for Downs, allowing Amin Rafiq (29no) and James Lauder to steer them home in the 41st over.

Steve Dobson’s half-century helped Sandford St Martin to a thrilling ten-run win at Leighton Buzzard Town in Division 2

Dobson struck 53 out of Sandford’s 161 all out.

Phil Whatmore scored 79 in the hosts’ reply, but 4-21 from Phil Nicholas and 3-23 from Simon Smith dismissed them for 151.

Great & Little Tew 2nd fell to their second defeat, losing by 21 runs at home to Bledlow Village.

Jack Haggett took 4-47 for Tew as Bledlow were bowled out for 181. But Tew fell for 160 in reply to Waseem Khan (5-33) and Tom Moore, who took 4-21.

Nick Rivett’s outstanding bowling performance counted for nothing as Oxford Downs 2nd crashed to a 113-run defeat at home to Wolverton Town in Division 3.

Rivett returned sensational figures of 8-45 to help dismiss Wolverton for 171 in the 48th over.

But Downs were blown away, Idris Butt taking 4-19 as the hosts were shot out for 58 inside 30 overs.

Ollie Burney followed up last weekend’s five-wicket haul with another superb bowling performance to help Witney Mills to a six-wicket win over visitors Thame Town 2nd in Division 4.

Burney took 4-76, Pierre Lefort 3-44 and Ben Madden 3-47 as Thame were all out for 212, David Saunders hitting 69 not out.

In reply, Mills eased to 214-4 Adam Mayho scoring 67 and Malcolm Evans 43.

Minster Lovell made it two wins from two as they edged past visitors Brackley by three wickets.

Jack Simpson’s 3-13 helped bowl the visitors out for 102, but Minster were grateful to Ollie Mersh, who hit 42, as they edged in at 103-7.

Shipton-under-Wychwood 2nd were denied victory by Horspath 3rd, who held on for a draw.

Shipton were all out off the final ball for 194, Russell Hayes hitting 60 and Adrian Manger taking 6-27.

Rob Panting then claimed 4-47 in Horspath’s reply, but they held out at 172-9.

Elliott Crowther’s 5-22 helped Minster Lovell 2nd to their second win as they brushed aside hosts Westbury 2nd by seven wickets in Division 7

The home side were shot out for 92, before Minster cruised to 93-3, Sam Walker hitting 41.

Great & Little Tew 4th had no answer to Simon Dickens (5-10) at they were skittled out for just 35 and crashed to a ten-wicket defeat at home to Shipton-under-Wychwood 3rd in Division 8.