A two-wicket victory for Basingstoke and North Hampshire Cricket Club (BNHCC) away against Tichbourne Park on Saturday means they will need to win their final Southern League Division One game against local rivals Hook and Newnham Basics to stand any chance of sealing the title.
The Bountymen won the toss and elected to field, with Martyn James making early inroads when he dismissed opening batsman George Ayling for four.
Tichbourne recovered with Pradeeptha Gunaratne (25) and Hector Don (13) adding 40 for the second wicket.
It was spinner Matt Thank-achan (4-20) who ripped into the home side’s top order, first removing Gunaratne who was caught by Max Harsham before William Phillips caught Don.
Thankachan then dismissed Martin Cheyney (20) and Henry Don (19), both caught and bowled to leave Tichbourne 92-5.
Captain Mitch Stokes brought himself on to bowl and took a wicket shortly after when Thomas Allam was caught by Phillips for four, to leave the home side 94-6.
Jack Skinner, who finished on 19 not out, was the only notable score from the tail as Tichbourne were all out for 136 from 45 overs.
In reply, Max Harsham (8) was the first Basingstoke batsman to fall when he nicked behind to Henry Don off the bowling of Hector Don.
Fellow opener Daniel Belcher fell for 15 soon after, caught by William Allam off Thomas Allam’s bowling.
Mitch Stokes (17), Chris Froud (15) and William Phillips (14) all got into double figures but could not go on to make bigger scores, and once Phillips had been dismissed, Basingstoke were 83-6.
Both Allams had caused significant damage, Thomas taking 2-47 and William with 3-13.
However player/coach David Griffiths (23), together with Chris Jolley (23) stabilised the Bountymen, getting them to 124 before Griffiths was bowled by Edward Berry.
Jolley departed shortly after but Thankachan (6 not out) and Martyn James (0 not out) saw BNHCC home inside 31 overs.
With leaders Calmore Sports running out with a four-wicket victory against Rowledge, giving them an 18-point lead, the Bountymen must pick up a victory on Saturday against Hook in the local derby and hope that Calmore lose against Portsmouth.