Papplewick issue SOS for Sri Lankan Kulasekara

LLOYD BANKS MORE RUNS -- opener Alex Lloyd, who fired a half-century for Papplewick and Linby.
LLOYD BANKS MORE RUNS -- opener Alex Lloyd, who fired a half-century for Papplewick and Linby.
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A return to form by key batsman Alex Lloyd was scant consolation as PAPPLEWICK AND LINBY slid to another defeat in the Bassetlaw League’s top flight.

Lloyd, who was sidelined for most of last season because of injury, stroked 66 (ten fours) at Glapwell Colliery.

But it could not prevent a five-wicket defeat for Papplewick that leaves them waiting for their first win in The Championship after relegation last summer from the Notts Premier League.

Now, Sri Lankan international all-rounder Kosala Kulasekara, whom Papplewick are hoping to sign for a second spell at the club, cannot arrive at Papplewick Hall quickly enough.

Opener Lloyd shared stands of 49 with Ross Fitz-John (21, three fours) and 46 with promising youngster Joe Walker (19).

But just when Papplewick needed to accelerate, they suffered a slump of four wickets for just nine runs, diving from 128 for three to 137 for seven against the bowling of Matt Page (four for 30 in 13 overs) and Joe Stone (two for 25 in ten).

A final total of 163 for eight in their allotted 50 overs was always unlikely to be enough against a Glapwell side who finished as high as third last term -- and so it proved.

The home team’s reply was masterminded by one of the best cricketers in the league, Danny Bircumshaw, who compiled a sensible, unbeaten 70 (nine fours), spanning 114 balls.

Bircumshaw received support from opener Steve Gooding (23, three fours) in a second-wicket partnership worth 61, and Glapwell went on to reach their target with 21 balls to spare.

Papplewick’s new-ball bowlers, Fitz-John (two for 52 in 12 overs) and skipper Jim Rhodes (14.3 overs for 26 runs) toiled hard. But not for the first time, their attack lacked strength in depth.

Now the locals face a weekend double-header, taking on North Wheatley with Leverton this Saturday and then Caythorpe 2nd on Bank Holiday Monday.