HARRISON Bowles’s four wickets helped Wimborne keep up their push for the Dorset Funeral Plan Premier Division title.

The opening bowler recorded devastating figures of four for 16 as the league leaders eased to a 177-run victory at Stalbridge.

Bowles’s effort had come after the visitors had racked up a daunting 259 for nine from their 50 overs – they bowled out the hosts for a meagre 82 to record maximum points.

Having won the toss and elected to bat first, Wimborne’s opening pair of Colin Randall (60) and James Miller (31) made Stalbridge toil in an opening stand worth 105.

Other contributions from Mark House (26), Graham Cole (36), Ed Bartlett (20) and Lewis Naylor (21*) allowed the league leaders to put themselves in command.

And Bowles was ruthless with the ball after the interval, ripping through four of Stalbridge’s top five batsmen to virtually end the game as a contest.

Bartlett (2-10) warmed up for his Dorset Minor Counties debut by doing damage at the other end as Stalbridge sunk to 25 for six.

Only four Stalbridge batsmen reached double figures with Jon Fryer (16) and Howard Batten (16) jointly topping the individual scores.

There were also wickets for Wimborne’s Lewis Naylor (1-30), Frank Turrell (1-9) and George Bartlett (1-9) as Wimborne increased to nine points their lead at the top ahead of Dorchester.

Poole Town remained third having recorded a three-wicket triumph at Swanage, who fell to the bottom of the pile.

Swans were rocked elsewhere as Broadstone suffered a 77-run defeat at relegation-threatened Sherborne.

Emlyn Kuhn’s sublime 114 put the Delph outfit to the sword as they toiled in the heat at the Terrace.

After losing the toss and being asked to bowl first, Broadstone recorded two early breakthroughs to leave the hosts struggling on 31 for two.

But a solid 91-run stand between Kuhn and Luke Hancock (64) saw Sherborne recover.

Kuhn then upped the scoring rate in an innings which included 10 fours and four sixes. He was the last man out as Sherborne posted 276 for five from their 50 overs.

Elliott Leadbeater (2-48) was the pick of the Broadstone bowlers, while Matt Spraggs (1-51), Ben Priest (1-55) and Caleb Rowe (1-49) all picked up wickets.

James Park’s 65 from 108 deliveries was the best the visitors could muster in their run chase, during which only three players reached double figures.

There were also solid scores from Pete Russell (28) and Ashley Collison (44) as Broadstone made their way to 165 for two.

But a flurry of wickets saw last season’s league winners collapse to 199 all out.

Kuhn (3-37) also impressed with the ball, while Tim Durston (3-16) helped clean up the tail.

Sherborne’s victory earned them the maximum 20 points. They are now five ahead of rock-bottom Swans.

Wimborne host Bere Regis at the Leaze on Saturday, while Poole Town take on Sherborne at Poole Park.

Broadstone are at home to Martinstown and Swanage host Stalbridge (all 1pm).