JACQUES Banton’s century has kept alive Barnt Green’s hopes of a second-place finish in Birmingham & District Premier Division One following a 40-run win at Walsall.
Barnt Green’s 20-point haul leaves them third in the table, 32 points behind second-placed Shrewsbury with three matches still to play.
On Saturday, The Green host Knowle & Dorridge (noon).
After finishing on 311-6 from their 50 overs away to Walsall last weekend, The Green dismissed the hosts for 271 after 47 overs, extending their winning streak to four matches in the process.
Barnt Green began their innings brightly, opening with a partnership of 51 between Ed Pollock (28) and Banton.
George Hargrave (12) and Dominic Harding (18) kept the scoreboard ticking over until the arrival of number five Tom Brown (71) who joined Banton in a fourth-wicket partnership of 103.
Even with Banton gone for 107 off 99 balls, having been stumped by wicketkeeper James Middleton off Luke Stynes (2-62) to leave the score 212-4, The Green were able to rely upon Rheedyi Amin (33) to continue the momentum.
In reply, Walsall lost Alex Mellor (1) early on, but Shoaib Akhtar (52) and Billy-J Cox (33) took the score to 60 before Cox fell.
Middleton (1) followed quickly but a stand of 71 between Akhtar and Dannyjo Cox (40) ensured Walsall stayed on track to challenge the lofty total. Bruce Thomason, smacking 90 off just 60 balls, kept up the run chase with some ferocious hitting.
But after Adam Hines (2-52) removed Paul Byrne (22) to leave the score 245-7, the innings quickly fell apart, with Jordan Bulpitt (2) and Thomason following shortly after.
Darrel Williams (2-56) put an end to the match to dismiss Samuel Mills (1), snapped up by Amin, with the final ball of the 47th over.