MEREWETHER and University increased pressure on Hamilton-Wickham in the race for the Newcastle district cricket minor premiership today after recording outright victories.
Merewether (67 points) flogged Belmont outright at Townson Oval to move within a point of Hamwicks (68), who only won by a first innings against Cardiff-Boolaroo, due to a century from Englishman Tom Jewell.
University moved to 60 points through a emphatic victory over Wallsend at University Oval.
Hamwicks were their own worst enemies at Passmore Oval with poor fielding costing them dearly.
Cardiff resumed day two at 1-10 and fell to 3-10 in a disastrous start.
Opener Joe Wenta (44) Jewell (109) and Ray Cooper (34) then rescued Cardiff to post 226.
That left Hamwicks with the impossible task of scoring 119 from seven overs for maximum points.
Hamwicks batted for four overs before calling stumps at 3-34.
‘‘You look at the table in the paper but if Merewether win there isn’t much we can do about it or anyone else in the competition,’’ Hamwicks skipper Kirk Mullard said.
‘‘We’ve just got to worry about ourselves and the only time we worry about Merewether is when we play them.’’
Merewether recorded their third outright of the season after declaring their first innings close at 4-187 with a lead of 68.
Belmont made 133 in their second innings, leaving the Lions (4-69) 33 overs to chase 66.
University declared overnight at 5-254, a lead of 176.
Wallsend held hope of saving the game at 4-104 with skipper Brett Jackson at the crease, but his teammates left him stranded on 66 not out in the team’s total of 176.
That left Uni with one run to score for the outright win.
Toronto Workers (7-259 and 1-15) fell four runs short of earning their first outright win of the season against Waratah-Mayfield (135 and 141) at Waratah Oval.
Toronto had two overs to score 18 runs in the second innings and required six off the final ball, but only managed three.
Stockton-Raymond Terrace also missed their chance to beat Newcastle City outright at No.1 Sportsground which would have pushed them into the top four.
City started the day 4-78 and were quickly rolled for 128.
The Seagulls swooped on the opportunity when Jeff Goninan (52) and Sam Jenkinson (68 not out) batted Stockton into a dominant position at 2-154.
City hung on to avoid the outright loss at 7-116.
At Kahibah Oval, Charlestown (207) produced an improved batting performance in their loss to Wests (238).
Daniel Arms (51) and Daniel Whittemore (37) impressed, but Wests veterans Ben Woolmer (3-42) and Anthony Hobson (3-34) were the difference.