Norfolk completed their Group Five programme with a perfect 100 per cent record to become the first qualifiers for the quarter-finals. Paul Newman's men were bowled out for just 176 by the Northamptonshire Board at Lakenham, but bit back to remove the visitors for 158.
Berkshire seem certain to join Norfolk in the last eight after a third win in three games in Group Two. Their latest victims were Dorset, who were bowled out for 206 in reply to Berkshire's 227 for seven. John Emburey, the former England spinner, took four for 27 off 8.4 overs as Dorset fell away from 100 for two.
Group Three and Group Six are both set for dramatic winner-takes-all finales. Essex and Suffolk both have three wins apiece in Three - Essex defeating Hertfordshire by nine wickets at Hertford after an unbeaten 101 from Andrew Hibbert - and they meet in their final fixture at Chelmsford on Sunday July 9. Before then, Cheshire and Staffordshire will decide Group Six in a derby showdown at Nantwich this coming Sunday, July 2. Cheshire moved to within a point of their local neighbours with a 32-run triumph over Lincolnshire at Grimsby that avenged their NatWest Trophy first round defeat by Mark Fell's men. Whoever wins at Nantwich will now finish top of the section.
Cumberland, last season's losing finalists, suffered their first defeat in three games in Group Eight in a thrilling finish at Tynemouth. Northumberland won by virtue of losing less wickets with the scores tied when Cumberland, needing two to win off the last ball, managed only one.
In the championship, Herefordshire took a 7-3 lead on first innings points against Devon on day one at Kington. Half-centuries from Ismail Dawood (61), Paul Lazenbury (55) and Ravi Nagra (55) lifted them to 273 for four off 60 overs in reply to Devon's 224 for seven off 57.
Minor Counties Championship
Kington: Devon 224-7 (MR Gribble 60, PJ Humphries 6-75) Hereford 273-4 (I Dawood 61, PS Lazenbury 55, R Nagra 55)
ECB 38-County Cup
Swindon: Wilts 109 Gloucs 112-0 (NC Stovold 56 not) Gloucs won by 10 wickets
Finchampstead: Berks 227-7 Dorset 206 (NJ Thurgood 54, JE Emburey 4-27) Berks by 21 runs
Stirlands: Sussex 248-8 (DA Alderman 61 not, NJK Creed 50) Hants 161-7 (R Hunter 60 not, DA Alderman 4-22) Sussex won by 87 runs
Hertford: Herts 208 (DM Ward 63) Essex 210-1 (A Hibbert 101 not, GW Ecclestone 87) Essex won by 9 wickets
Copdock: Middlesex 239-7 (R Jones 67, S Selwood 55) Suffolk 243-5 (RJ Catley 82) Suffolk won by 5 wickets
Ynysygerwn: Wales 133 (DA Banks 4-28) Worcs 137-6 Worcs won by 4 wickets Bedford Town: Leics 195-9 (MDR Sutliff 51) Beds 197-3 (W Larkins 55) Beds won by 7 wickets
Lakenham: Norfolk 176 (C Amos 55) Northants 158 Norfolk won by 18 runs Grimsby Town: Cheshire 202-9 (PRJ Bryson 88, RJ Chapman 5-33) Lincs 170 (SA Stoneman 4-22) Cheshire won by 32 runs
Christ Church, Oxford: Bucks 231-8 (RP Lane 88) Oxon 233-4 (BJ Thompson 74 not) Oxon won by 6 wickets
Ashford: Kent 204-9 (R Bowers 4-45) Surrey 205-5 (G Batty 64) Surrey won by 5 wickets
Tynemouth: Northumberland 185-7 (W Falla 103 not, SJ O'Shaughnessy 4-37) Cumberland 185-9 (SJ O'Shaughnessy 68, G Angus 4-25) Northumberland won by losing less wickets