A PULSATING encounter culminated in a tie as Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship table-toppers Worlington were forced to share the spoils with lowly Mistley.

Both sides finished on 244 for nine after a thrilling first division encounter in Suffolk.

Pacesetters Worlington were kept in check by Tim Scott, who returned three wickets for 59 runs, while young Oliver Fifield pitched in with two for 48.

In reply, Mistley’s star man with the bat was South African Sizwe Masondo, who clubbed 95, ably supported by Adrian Stockton (38).

Elsewhere, there was another eye-catching result as basement boys Elmstead – last year’s champions – stunned second-placed Halstead.

They won by 29 runs after batting first and finishing on 211 for nine, largely thanks to Jordan Elliott (43), Elliot Mann (42) and Ryan Vickery (40).

Chris Rayner took four for 32 for Halstead but, in reply, his side were skittled for 182.

Josh Ruthven hit 41 but there were three wickets apiece for Elmstead pair Aidan O’Brien and Peter Webster.

While Worlington were being frustrated by Mistley and Halstead were losing against Elmstead, second-placed Woolpit tumbled to a six-wicket defeat at classy Wivenhoe.

There were two wickets apiece for Joseph Nicholls and Brendon Louw and the latter also hit 54 not out, while Jakob Kelly compiled 52.

At the other end of the table, Frinton remain second from bottom after losing by 109 runs at home to Witham.

Chasing 298 for victory, they could only muster 188.

Witham’s star men were James Smith (113), Michael Godwin (43), James Suett (38) and professional footballer Cody McDonald (31 not out), while skipper Jake Wakelin returned four for 17.

Jermaine Shillingford hit a half-century for Frinton.

Maldon prevailed by two wickets at Coggeshall thanks to 100 not out from opener Max Bryant and a half-century from Ross Walpole.

Earlier, Matt Wild had taken three for 38 and there were a couple of wickets for spinner Toby Pugh.

George Canham top-scored for Coggeshall with 44, closely followed by Jimmy Rees (42).

George Blackwell had a fruitful five overs, snaring three wickets for 20 runs.

In division two, Braintree enjoyed an emphatic 150-run victory at home to Clacton.

After batting first and making 297 for six, they skittled the Seasiders for 147.

Will Jackson (90), Chris Leech (45) and Rory Ainsley (40) led the way for the hosts, although there were three wickets for Lewis Kirk (three for 58) and two for skipper Imran Sheikh.

Clacton’s Bradley Pitts top-scored for his side with 39 but his side were left bamboozled by Braintree bowler Barry Stephens, who helped himself to six wickets for 43 runs in just 6.5 overs.

Copford had a tough day at home to East Bergholt, losing by a crushing 185 runs.

Kelvedon and Feering defeated Ipswich and East Suffolk by 24 runs but Little Bardfield Village came a cropper at Copdock and Old Ipswichian, losing by 47 runs.