BICESTER & North Oxford received a reality check after a 71-run loss at Wolverton Town condemned them to a first Cherwell League defeat since 2015.

Having gone unbeaten in gaining promotion from Division 4 last year, Bicester were given a stark reminder of the challenges that face them in Division 3 when they crumbled in pursuit of host Wolverton’s 169.

Dan Savin (3-30) and debutant Andy Godbold (3-30) made short work of the Wolvercote top and middle order.

But Wolverton rebuilt the innings, with Michael Yeates (39) and No 10 Haroon Malik (41) frustrating the visiting bowlers.

Wolverton were eventually bowled out for 169, Chris de Kock finishing with 4-64.

Despite the late rally, Bicester were favourites at the break, but they could muster little of the resilience their hosts had displayed.

Bicester captain Ryan Moore had to watch from the other end as his side capitulated, losing five early wickets including Rob Humphreys, Warwick Bradfield and Danny Clark for ducks.

There was brief resistance from Oliver Ward and Moore himself went on to score a gallant, if fruitless, 24 from 83 balls.

After the captain fell, a brief cameo from Savin (19) was the best Bicester could muster as fell to 98 all out.

Newly-promoted Westbury enjoyed a 104-run victory at home to Cublington.

George Markham top-scored with 80 as Westbury posted 263-9 dec in 52 overs.

Ketan Patel scored 75 in Cublington’s reply, but they were never in the hunt as Andy Clark’s 3-13 kept them in check, the visitors tumbling to 159 all out.

Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts fell to a crushing seven-wicket defeat at home to Leighton Buzzard Town in Division 2.

Only Chris Day (33) got going as Nondies were dismissed for 127, Jack Kempster taking 4-13 and Lee Selfe 4-29.

Kempster then hit 68 not out for Buzzard as they eased home at 128-3, Liam Gregor claiming 3-14.

In Division 7, Matt Collins (64), Robin Wilkins (34), Adam Gould (28) and Will Irving (25), saw Bicester & North Oxford 2nd to 212-4 at home against Long Marston.

Despite three wickets apiece for Liam Randall and captain Ben Clark, the hosts were unable to force the win, their opponents closing on 151-9.

Bicester & North Oxford 3rd clung on for a draw against Didcot 4th in Division 10.

After Didcot had scored 190, Michael Ibery’s 29 was the top score as Bicester finished on 60-9 to frustrate their visitors.

This Saturday, Bicester’s 1st XI entertain East Oxford 2nd, the 2nd XI travel to Bledlow Village 2nd and the 3rd XI are away to Shipton-under-Wychwood 4th.