INVERURIE Don Valley lost to local rivals Ellon Gordon by eight wickets on Saturday, a result that will ensure top-flight cricket for the Ellon side next season.
Inverurie batted first, reaching the respectable total of 176 all out, mainly due to George Hadden whose 84 gave his side a fighting chance against long time rivals Ellon Gordon. In the event it proved to be in vain against the home side set on making its position in Grade 1 safe. Brian Veldsman led the charge, as his side easily passed the visitors total, his unbeaten 76 being full of fine shots despite rain interruptions.
Elsewhere Methlick were denied the opportunity to ease its relegation troubles when their game with Cults at Allan Park was called off without a ball being bowled, as was the case at Kings College where Bon Accord were given no chance to extend its lead.
Second placed Mannofield were similarly denied action on a rain sodden afternoon in the city after its game with 2nd St Ronald was called off.
In Grade 3 Ellon Gordon 2nds were handed a second successive defeat, tumbling to 114 all out when chasing the Portcullis total of 127 for the loss of nine wickets.
In the same division 2nd Knightriders kept up its relentless pursuit of the title with a thumping 175 run win at Lairds where Methlick 2nds were bowled out for 52 after being set 228 to win. The hero of the afternoon was Vee Amirthraj who turned in the impressive figures of six wickets for six runs.