ANY outside hopes Frocester harboured of a third successive West of England Premier League title were dashed by torrential rain which virtually wiped out the entire final Saturday of the season.
Frocester, who were knocked off top spot the week before by struggling Downend, had to win their last outing and count on new leaders Bath slipping up at home to Taunton.
But rain prevented a result in both games and that meant Bath preserved a nine-point advantage to claim the silverware.
Downend, ready for a ‘winner stays up’ head-to-head away to Taunton St Andrews, were also washed out to stay in eighth place and maintain their Premier One status with Saints and Taunton going down.
Bedminster sealed promotion to Premier One as champions of Premier Two Bristol/Somerset with Lechlade being elevated from the other side of the pyramid structure, winning Premier Two Glos/Wilts.
All promotions and relegations have yet to be rubber stamped. But Warminster are preparing to go down from Premier Two Glos/Wilts, while in Premier Two Bristol/Somerset, bottom side Brislington are set to drop down to Bristol & North Somerset with second last Weston-super-Mare due to be relegated to the Somerset division.
The need to balance things up across the pyramid structure could mean that a third side – eighth-placed Knowle – also have to drop from this division although final decisions have not yet been announced.
The relegation of three teams from this division could also mean that three sides would have to leave Bristol & North Somerset where Stapleton guaranteed themselves seventh place by somehow completing 20 overs of their home date against Old Bristolians Westbury and claiming three bowling points before the weather finally brought play to a halt.
The visitors had limped to 81-7, Matt Chidgey (3-23 from seven) and Abhi Patil (3-40 from ten) both striking to ensure Stapleton ended the campaign three points clear of Twyford House who now wait to see where they will be playing next season.
The title was won by Claverham while Portishead and Frenchay are facing relegation back to the Bristol & District League’s Senior Division after finishing in the bottom two positions.
In the Gloucestershire division, meanwhile, Hatherley & Reddings finished top, 12 points clear of Dumbleton, and are preparing for life in Premier Two Glos/Wilts.