MENAI Bridge moved up to second in the North Wales Cricket League Premier Division standings with a 178-run victory at Pontblyddyn.

The defending champions claimed maximum points from their Bank Holiday Monday clash to keep the heat on title favourites Bangor, with the gap between the fierce rivals now 17 points with three games remaining.

Bridge will be hoping to close the gap this Saturday when they welcome Northop, with Dion Holden’s side also facing Mochdre and Pwllheli during the crucial run in.

A strong performance in the middle gave the visitors a solid foundation to secure their overall success, with Bridge ending their allotted 50 overs on 261-9.

Holden was at the very top of his game during his time at the crease, hitting nine boundaries on his way to an impressive knock of 79.

Overseas player Sean O’Callaghan was another to catch the eye on his way to 67 from 77 balls, with wicketkeeper-opener Jack Gower and Gethin Roberts also reaching double-figures after contribution 26 and 29 respectively.

Daz Wilcock was the undoubted pick of the home bowling attack, claiming a five-wicket haul for the loss of 69 runs from a 12-over spell.

Roberts made an immediate impression with the new ball and disposed of Ben Mason (16), Gethin Thomas (1) and Jonathan Byrd (0) in quick succession on his way to figures of 3-25, and O’Callaghan also secured notable success to claim three scalps at the expense of 11 from six overs.

The away side’s ruthless attitude restricted their opponents to 83 all out in reply as Holden continued his excellent overall contribution with the prized wickets of David Foulkes (11) and James Griffiths (9).