CRICKET: Skipper’s century effort in vain again

MATT FINISH -- Matthew Dowman, who hit a century and has been Papplewick's stand-out player in recent weeks
MATT FINISH -- Matthew Dowman, who hit a century and has been Papplewick's stand-out player in recent weeks

EX-PROFESSIONAL Matthew Dowman is trying all he knows to inspire struggling Papplewick and Linby and was once again at the forefront with an unbeaten century in their latest Notts Premier League clash.

PAPPLEWICK AND LINBY 188-7

CAYTHORPE 190-3

But the rest of the locals’ frontline batsmen went missing in an incredibly lop-sided innings that set up a hefty seven-wicket reverse against high-flying Caythorpe.

Dowman is famous in the game for smashing a record Youth Test score of 267 not out for England in 1993. He went on to play for Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire.

Now the Papplewick skipper, he has put together a crucial set of performances this season and hit an undefeated 106 (two sixes and 13 fours) at Caythorpe.

But while he was looking supreme, his fellow batsmen were dropping like flies with none of the other five in the top six making it past double figures as Papplewick found themselves flapping at 18 for four and 41 for five.

The damage was primarily done by Tim Haines (three for 13 from 15 overs) and fellow strike bowler James Hemmings (two for 55 from 14).

It wasn’t until Dowman was joined at the wicket by Brad Matthews that the innings achieved any genuine stability.

He hung around for 64 deliveries for a knock of 26 (four fours) as he shared 67 for the sixth wicket with Dowman.

A total of 28 extras and ten from Graeme Roberts at least salvaged a bit of respect and gave the Papplewick attack something to bowl at.

And they made an encouraging start when Matthews (one for 21 from five overs) removed opener Josh Mierkalns with just three on the board.

At one stage it was 57 for three with a wicket apiece from Jonathan Thrower and Dane Straw.

But the door was emphatically slammed shut by opener James Hawley and James Oldham.

For the pair shared an unbroken partnership of 134 with Hawley smashing an unbeaten 101 spiced with five sixes and ten fours.

Oldham finished on 42 not out (two sixes and three fours) to inflict a seventh outright defeat on Papplewick this season.

The locals now have just five more matches in which to cement their top-flight status and finish the season on a high after so far enjoying just two outright victories this term.