Carlisle extended their lead at the top of the Cumbria Cricket League Premier Division to 15 points with a six-wicket win at closest rivals Furness.

It means, with just three weekends of action left, the Edenside outfit are now in pole position to clinch a long overdue league championship.

After a wet week, Carlisle gambled on bowling first on a sticky surface and were indebted to another disciplined performance from seamers Mike Slack and Fraser Conn.

The pair, who have proved deadly in a number of key encounters this season, once again combined to destroy the heart of the home batting.

Slack finished with 4-30, while Conn’s 15 overs went for just 31 as he claimed the prize scalps of South African sub pro Brett Pelser and Mark Daly.

Only Whyll Stanway, with 36, withstood Carlisle’s attack as Henry Walker and James Bell each picked up wickets to dismiss the home side for 93.

Slack and Ben Davidson then laid the foundations for a successful chase, but it was skipper Marc Brown with an unbeaten 39 who ensured a vital victory.

Later Brown said his side had shown real commitment to come out on top with the fielding a key feature as they took every chance that went their way.

Champions Cockermouth trail Carlisle by 22 points but are still fighting to stay in the hunt, although the odds are stacked high against them.

They were comfortable winners against Dalton after only having 33 overs, in which they reached 176-4.

That was built on an opening stand of 115 between Matthew Sempill (54) and skipper Alex Grainger (64) and 41 not-out from professional Kavishka Anjula.

Dalton were bowled out for 122 in 31.2 overs with the wickets shared around by the seven bowlers used by Cockermouth.

Whitehaven haven’t had much to enthuse over this season but they were able to record a good five-wicket win over Keswick.

The visitors, who traditionally find it hard putting out their strongest team at this time of the season, were bowled out for 88 in 32 overs.

Veteran Habib Baloch (5-22) and professional Safyaan Sharif (3-55), on his return from Scotland World Cup qualifying duties, were the main instigators of the collapse.

Skipper James McGown (14) top-scored for Keswick.

Sharif (32) was the leading run-maker for Whitehaven in their winning reply of 89-5 in 35 overs. Keswick professional Geeth Kumara took 4-27 in his 15 overs.

Workington, it seems, are either very good or very bad, with little in between and Saturday was an off-day as they were comprehensively beaten at home by Millom.

The visitors took first use and although they lost two early wickets professional Sadamai and Danny Fallows took the score to 118-3.

Fallows was dismissed for 50 but Sadamai went on to make 104 and he was out in the final over as Millom closed on 205-7.

Workington started steadily and were looking okay at 37-1 but in an amazing collapse they folded completely and were bowled out for 49 – the last nine wickets going down inside 11 overs.

Rob Wilson finished with 8-23 while opener Adam Chambers (14) was the only Workington batsman in double figures.

Egremont are still looking for that elusive first league win when they lost by five wickets at Wigton.

Opener Jack Stubbings (35) anchored the Egremont innings but the only support he received came from Owen Thompson (21) and they were bowled out for 86 in 40.4 overs.

The wickets were shared by Nico Watt (4-30), John Reed (3-23) and Chris Hodgson (3-23).

Egremont took three quick wickets to raise their hopes but John Reed (37) and Matthew Reed (35) put together a fourth-wicket stand which knocked off the bulk of the runs.

Although they both went before the end, Wigton got there in the 26th over.

Cleator professional Supeshala Jayathilake continued his good run of form with a fine knock of 110 which helped lay the base for victory at Lindal Moor.

Jayathilake and James Rogers (46) figured in a fourth-wicket stand of 145 which enabled Cleator to finish their 50 overs on 225-7.

Lindal Moor made a good fist of it against the 10 men of Cleator and it took a brilliant catch by Jimmy Hocking to swing it in the visitors’ favour.

There was also some effective bowling from Darren Clark (5-45) and Douglas Hughes (4-37).