BARTON'S promotion hopes will be all-but over unless they win at Hatherleigh this Saturday.
Sandford won at Barton last Saturday on run rate to leave Adam Parker's side 35 points off the promotion places.
Although Sandford won on run-rate, Barton still had 14 overs to go to make 56 to win with wickets in hand and may feel the rulebook did them no favours.
"Positives to come out of the game were that we were in a strong position to win game if it had not rained," said Barton skipper Parker.
"The rain put a stop to a game that looked like it was going to be a good finish.
"We did well to bowl them out for 156 although at one point we should have got them out for less.
"Sandford batted well lower down the order.
"Our batting didn't get off to a great start and we found ourselves behind the run rate, once the rain started it was always a challenge to make up the difference.
"Hatherleigh this week is a yet another big game for us where we will be looking to get back to winning ways."
George Biggs made a top score of 46 not out on only his second outing in the 1st XI.
A stand of 47 for the third wicket between Matt Theedom and Dave Dredge (33) helped Sandford reach 156 all out in the 36th of what would have been 48 overs had it gone the distance.
Adam Parker (3-27) and Damon Calland (2-12) vied with each other for the leading bowling performance by Barton.
Barton's problem was they found it hard to get the Sandford bowling away. Ryan Glass (2-18) and Linton Terblanche (2-23) were particularly miserly.
Calland was in for 91 balls making 18 not out, although he was probably doing the right thing by staying there as wickets had fallen at the other end.
Tom Drake made 25 and Andy McVeigh 19 when the rain became too bad to continue at 101 for six in the 34th over.
ABBOTSKERSWELL'S batting has to improve if they are going to claw their way out of the A Division bottom two before it is too late.
Abbots go to Brixham this Saturday one off the bottom and five points away from safety after taking slim pickings from a rained-off meeting with Plympton.
Ryan Skinner took five wickets and there were three for Jamie Carr as Abbots were hustled out for 121.
Abbots were 19 for five at one stage and only got into three figures thanks to Charlie Garrett (35) and Marcus Green (25) baling them out.
Plympton got as far as 26 for one – Andy Walter the man out – when play was halted in the 12th over, to early for run-rate to be used.
"We were 16 for four and 19 for five and only got to 121 thanks to Charlie Garrett," said skipper Richard Acton.
"Our batting keeps letting us down and until we start scoring decent totals we are not going to win many matches."
BRIXHAM were glad to get away from Heathcoat with a rain-affected draw.
Relations between the two sides were strained well before the end following a spattering of incidents between the players during the match.
Brixham skipper Richard Ward said he was delighted the game was called off when it was.
"Conditions favoured Heathcoat in a rain-affected game and we gladly left the field for an abandonment," said Ward.
Brixham were asked to bat first by Heathcoat skipper Sam Smith and were all out for 181 in their 47th over.
Kyle Schreuder made a top score of 73 and was involved in significant stands of 59 with Andrew Lewin (20) and 27 with Chris Sleep (11).
Openers George Northcott and Tom Hopper put on 40 before Steffan Jones (2-14) broke them up.
Brixham found the turning ball hard to play and lost wickets in the last 10 overs to Jean Rossouw (3-41) and Jack Menheneott (3-43).
Heathcoat were 51 for one after six overs – skipper Sam Smith unbeaten on 21 – when umpires Jim Hicken and Paul Dart pulled the plug.
Another 14 overs needed to be bowled for run-rate to come into play.