SWINDON 2nd have certainly had their say on the Wiltshire Cricket League Division One title race.

Following their shock five-wicket win against table-topping Great Bedwyn last weekend – which blew the title battle wide open – Swindon upset the odds again on Saturday when downing Avebury by 36 runs.

Second-placed Avebury entered the match full of confidence after closing the gap between themselves and Bedwyn at the top to just 10 points.

But the defeat means Avebury are now relying on Bedwyn slipping up in at least one of their concluding two fixtures.

Avebury made a faltering start at the weekend, allowing Swindon openers Christy Millar (59) and Jamie Baden (34) to build a solid foundation for the middle order to build on.

Strong hitting in the concluding overs saw Swindon reach 212-9 from their 45 overs – a target Avebury found daunting enough as top-order batsmen Greg Dix, Rob Gater and Michael Rae all fell for ducks.

Jeremy Richards’ knock of 88 restored hope for an increasingly desperate Avebury side, but they were eventually bowled out for 176.

Bedwyn took full advantage of Avebury’s slip-up – coasting to a 69-run win at Malmesbury.

Robert Palmer (59) and Richard Bosson (66) both struck half-centuries as Bedwyn set Malmesbury 251 to win.

Despite Toby Kershaw’s impressive contribution of 83, a devastating spell of bowling from Joe Blundy, who returned figures of 4-21 runs, reduced the hosts to 181 all out.

Elsewhere, Corsham 2nd can still mathematically win the league – but will require all results to go their way despite beating Winsley by 14 runs.

Chippenham 2nd beat Beckington by 29 runs, while Nationwide House won at Marlborough by three wickets.

Division Two

BURBAGE & Easton Royal 2nd 88-run loss at Biddestone 2nd set up a thrilling conclusion to the second-tier title race – with the top four teams covered by just 12 points.

Ironically, one team not involved in the title chase is Biddestone, who upset the odds courtesy of Aidan Andrews’ fine bowling performance.

Chasing 255 to win after half-centuries were posted by Thomas Walker (71) and Aled Evans (68no), Burbage fell at the first hurdle when opener Jon Street was caught behind for a duck.

Rhy Davies (71) gave the visitors some hope, but just 49 runs were scored by Burbage’s final eight batsmen, restricting them to 166 all out.

The news was more than welcomed by the chasing pack of Swindon NALGO, Goatacre 2nd and Bear Flat.

All three teams won – beating Swindon United Churches, Beehive Southwick and Warminster 2nd respectively – to set up a tense finale to the division.

Burbage and Bear Flat both have a game in hand over NALGO and Goatacre.

Division Three

BRADFORD-ON-AVON’S cancelled fixture at Potterne 3rd handed Trowbridge 2nd the title with two rounds of fixtures remaining.

Trowbridge lead Bradford by 49 points following their six-wicket success against Chippenham 3rd.

Twenty points were secured by the visitors, who chased down Chippenham’s target of 140 with ease.

Wickets were shared between all six Trowbridge bowlers, before Ismail Suleman’s standout innings of 92 not out won the game.

There was also success for Keevil, who leapfrogged Potterne in the table after a five-wicket win at Swindon 3rd – earning them 22 league points.

Division Four

ONE more victory should be enough for Devizes 2nd to secure the title after they defeated Wanborough in a low-scoring contest.

Stanley Vas top scored for Wanborough as they collapsed to 87 all out.

But a pitch shouldn’t be judged until both teams have batted. And so this proved when Devizes’ top five batsmen were bowled out for a combined 18 runs.

Only Joe Hutchinson’s knock of 26 not out rescued Devizes from what would’ve been a red-faced loss, while George Dunford chipped in with 15.

Devizes are now 20 points clear of second-placed Royal Wootton Bassett 2nd with two fixtures remaining.

Bassett kept the chase on the title leaders, though, by defeating Ramsbury by three wickets.

In other results, Combe Down triumphed over Wroughton Wranglers, while Corsham 3rd defeated Melksham.

Marlborough 2nd, meanwhile, were the only team to win away from home, beating Nationwide House 2nd by 55 runs.

Division Five

PURTON 2nd claimed a thrilling one-run win away at Biddestone 3rd.

Having hit 149-8 in the first innings, Purton managed to keep Biddestone in check after tea.

A last-wicket stand from 99-9 took the hosts to the brink of victory, only for the Purton to take the vital 10th wicket with the score on 148.