SORRY Stourbridge blew their chances of returning to Birmingham League status next season after losing their vital play-off contest with Staffordshire League champions Lichfield.

Having already beaten Warwickshire winners Stratford upon Avon, but then going down to a losing draw at Shropshire side Worfield, it meant Stourbridge had to get the better of Lichfield to secure promotion.

But having restricted Lichfield to a modest 138 off their allotted 50 overs, Stourbridge then triggered the self destruct button as they collapsed and finally lost out by 51 runs.

The contest had began in such promising fashion as Stourbridge reduced Lichfield to 46 for seven with dangerous Dan Such leading the bowling assault by taking four for 23.

Tom Stone steadied the ship somewhat with 17 while Lichfield skipper Callum Heanan supplied a further 27.

However , a last wicket stand of 46 between Joe Seager and James Wilkinson began to alter the dynamics.

Stourbridge's fielding became ragged at times in their frustration to part the final pair and matters worsened when Dan Wale suffered a serious hand injury which would affect his batting.

Seager went on to strike 38 while Wilkinson finished on 9 not out as the momentum began to shift in Lichfield's favour.

Dominic O'Reilly finished with figures of two for 43 while Jitesh Jivan-Patel picked up two for 38 in their support of Such.

It was the batting that was to prove Stourbridge's downfall. Their reply was delayed after the Air Ambulance had to be called to attend a hockey player who fell seriously ill on an adjacent pitch.

On resumption, Stourbridge's top order crumbled to 36 for five.

Josh Banks and Seth Rogerson tried to halt the slide with a sixth wicket stand of 42.

But Rogerson's departure for 16 resulted with Stourbridge losing their last five wickets for just 11 runs, brave Banks being the final wicket to fall with a defiant 32.

Former Birmingham League star Brinder Phagura created most of the carnage by claiming four for 28 and was superbly backed up by Riley Ward with three for 13 while Tom Stone took two for 13.

It means Lichfield and Worfield, who thrashed Stratford by eight wickets, take their place in the Birmingham League next term, replacing relegated Whitchurch and Pelsall.