BOURNEMOUTH are 18 points clear at the top of the ECB Southern Premier Division after a four-wicket win at South Wilts, which has virtually put the Salisbury club out of contention.

They bossed 80 per cent of a rain-truncated 34-over affair at Bemerton, reducing South Wilts to 116-8 - a target Bournemouth, motoring at eight an over for a lengthy spell, polished off in the 30th over.

With five of their last seven matches against teams in the bottom half of the table, Bournemouth are firmly in the driving seat, although skipper Chris Park is keeping his – and his team’s – feet firmly on the ground.

“Every team in this league is capable of beating each other, as is proving to be the case. There’s been a lot of wet weather recently and you only need to get stuck in on a damp track and get rolled over for things to quickly turn upside down,” he said.

“There’s a long way to go yet, but we won at important toss at Bemerton and, after the disappointment of losing to St Cross last week, produced a really positive performance.”

With Dan Conway missing, teenager Ollie Breckon took the responsibility of leading the Bournemouth attack.

He had Tom Morton caught behind early in his opening spell and New Milton-raised Raff Hussey nicked one behind later.

Australian Peter Rowe (23), Jack Mynott (21), Ben Draper (19) and James Hayward all made starts, but with Luke Webb taking two spectacular catches, South Wilts seldom got on top and fell from 74-2 to 116-8, with Ed Denham taking 3-40.

It was left to Ben Huntley to revive the South Wilts innings. His quickfire 37 not out lifting the hosts to 151-8.

Bournemouth needed to score at 4.5 runs an over to reach their target, but wary of the threatening dark sky, set off a breakneck speed.

Nick Park hit two fours before being pouched at slip, but opening partner Luke Webb and left-hander Simon Woodruff had 88 on the scoreboard in 11 overs.

Webb stuck a six and five fours his 32, while Woodruff, severe on anything pitched up, survived a spill and went on to strike nine fours and a maximum in a stylish 66.

Bournemouth lost four wickets for 16 runs – three to Matt Burton (3-34) - after Woodruff was caught, but the outcome was never in doubt as the visitors strolled home with 29 balls to spare.