BOWLERS Mike King and Jono Gooch became unlikely batting heroes as Colwall turned near certain defeat into an incredible two-wicket victory over Eastnor in a thrilling Worcestershire League Division One clash.

Having dismissed their hosts for a below-par 151 total, Colwall looked strong favourites at tea.

But they then crashed to 49-7 in reply, before King and Gooch dramatically turned the tide with a battling stand of 91 for the eighth wicket.

In a tense finish the visitors edged home with 14 balls to spare as they moved 34 points clear of second-from-bottom Eastnor.

Colwall had the better of the early exchanges as Dan Newby justified the decision to insert Eastnor by clean bowling openers Mohammad Hasnain and Tareq Jamil with just 38 on the board.

Waqas Ahmed hit back with an aggressive 41 before Jono Gooch had him caught behind and from a reasonable position at 88-3 Eastnor began to flounder.

Ben Febery (3-28) did the main damage with the next three wickets, one a return catch and two well caught by King, who also weighed in with a wicket, while Ancil Nedd picked up 1-14 from seven overs.

Eastnor lost three wickets on 142 before Mike Gooch trapped Raheel Lone lbw as their opponents were dismissed for 151.

But they were boosted by pacemen Sajid Ali and Lone after tea. Lone had Joe Blight caught behind and removed Ben Butler in similar fashion as Colwall slumped to 15-2.

This soon became 28-5 as Ali claimed three more victims, with Ben Wheeler (1), Nick Brown (14) and James Abel (4) falling.

King could only watch as Lone took a return catch to remove Nedd (2) and then trapped Febery (10) lbw.

But King and Jono Gooch defended stoutly and once Lone (4-35) and Ali (3-18) had completed their spells they began to thrive against the Eastnor change bowlers.

The pair gradually gained in confidence and once past the 100 mark, victory began to look a possibility.

King upped the tempo with a six to reach his half-century but having compiled an invaluable 57 he then lofted a catch to cover.

That brought Mike Gooch in to join his brother with 12 needed from three overs, but in the space of four balls it was all over. First Jono pulled a powerful six to square leg before taking a single and then Mike drove the fourth ball for a three that tied the scores. With a wild throw-in conceding four overthrows, Colwall were home and dry.

A freak thunderstorm saw play washed out after Colwall seconds and thirds reached strong positions.

Colwall put Eastnor seconds in to bat in their Second XI Division One clash and restricted them to 146-9 off 49 overs when the storm broke. Fergus Cameron claimed three wickets and Jack Hughes two.

The thirds recovered from 28-4 to reach 187-9 against Canon Frome in Marches League Division Two. Adam Greaves (54) and Ash Jones (57) batted well.