Haverhill’s two Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship sides experienced very different results in their respective promotion bids.
The first team saw their chances of finishing in the top two of Division Two take a hammer blow when they crashed to a 40 run defeat at home to promotion rivals Braintree.
The second XI had a much better day however, returning from their trip to Hadleigh II with a 43 run victory to stay second in Division Four.
Haverhill’s bowlers reduced second-placed Braintree to 107 all out in their vital match, with Will Bailey (7-4-20-2), Dan Pass (8-1-37-2) and Callum Brunning (6.4-4-7-4) among the wickets.
The wicket was two-paced and as low as the score was, it was going to prove tricky to chase down - and so it proved.
Braintree’s 21-year-old Australian all rounder Lachlan Ford came into the match on the back of an average of 106 runs per knock from his last six innings, only to fall to a Joe Woodley catch at mid on from the bowling of Pass for 15.
Ford, however, made up for his lack of runs with a devastating spell of bowling as Haverhill were skittled for just 67. He was well supported by Dan Garner, who took 4-37 in his 11 overs.
Having removed openers Sam Powell (0) and Liam Botten (1) early doors Ford went on to claim four further wickets, ending with figures of 14-3-27-6.
Only Jamie Boulton (12) and Russ Davis (12) reached double figures in Haverhill’s reply, with extras top scoring on 14.
Having dismissed Braintree in 35.4 overs, it gave Haverhill 54 overs to reach their target, but they were all out in exactly 27 overs to leave them 40 runs behind their Essex rivals in fourth place with just four games to go.
Haverhill II meanwhile recovered from a poor start at Hadleigh II, where they lost openers Sam Hartshorn (0) and Carl Bradford (5) to reach 159-8 in their 45 overs.
They were indebted largely to Richard Partridge (60), Steve Fox, who made 33 in his first appearance for the team this season and an unbeaten 15 from Phil Dingley.
Hadleigh got off a good start in reply and at one stage were 72-1 off 20 overs, but the introduction of seamer Joey Kettle and spinner Harry Harding changed everything.
Kettle took 5-25 in 11 impressive overs and Harding 3-27 in his eight overs as the wickets tumbled and Hadleigh were bowled out for just 116.
Opener Ryan Phillips (51) top scored for Hadleigh.
The win means Haverhill II are 11 points ahead of third-placed Tuddenham with four games left, the first of which sees table-toppers Halstead II come to Manor Road on Saturday (22).