Former Forest star’s son joins Papplewick promotion party

PROUD DAD -- Steve Blatherwick
PROUD DAD -- Steve Blatherwick

Three batsmen plundered half-centuries as PAPPLEWICK AND LINBY pocketed another thrilling victory in their 11th-hour promotion chase.

But even they were upstagedbecause teenage all-rounder Charlie Blatherwick returned his first five-wicket haul in the Bassetlaw League, Championship -- only weeks after being handed his senior debut.

The 15-year-old left-arm spinner Blatherwick, who is the eldest son of former Nottingham Forest and Chesterfield footballer Steve Blatherwick, continued his remarkable rise through the ranks at Papplewick this season to take five for 66 in 14 overs.

And with Sri Lankan import Kosala Kulasekara, Mark Nelson and Alex Lloyd adding fifties after tea, it added up to a resounding eclipse of Thores by Colliery -- and the side’s eighth win in nine matches.

The win kept Papplewick in third place in the table. And although the top two, Farnsfield and Clipstone Welfare, show no signs of slipping up, the locals have a golden chance of making more ground on them this Saturday when they take on leaders Farnsfield at Papplewick Hall.

After that, they have two more matches to play -- away to Worksop and at home to Killamarsh Juniors.

If they win all three, they know they won’t be far away from grabbing the title and, with it, an immediate return to the Notts Premier League.

Blatherwick’s heroics came after Thoresby had seemingly justified their decision to bat first on winning the toss.

For despite a couple of wickets for Richard Hodgkinson (two for 48 in 12 overs), they eased to 190 for three in the hands of Farooq Aziz (66, eight fours), Chris Bennett (42, ten fours) and Lee Willis (38, one six and five fours).

But Blatherwick, sent on as second change, removed both Aziz and Willis, plus two other batsmen, Mohammad Yasar (24) and Nayeem Ahmed (23, four fours), who were beginning to look dangerous.

With captainJim Rhodes (three for 37 in 5.4 overs) mopping up the tail, Thoresby lost their last seven wickets for only 34 runs and slid to 224 all out.

Papplewick’s reply was as authoritative as they could have hoped for.

Lloyd stroked 55, including eight boundaries, in a first-wicket stand of 89 with Adam Rostance (29, four fours).

And then Kulasekara and Nelson took centre stage with a superb, unbroken third-wicket partnership of 124 that raced the locals to an eight-wicket victory as early as the 35th of the allotted 50 overs.

The Sri Lankan all-rounder found his touch for the first time since re-joining the club to boost their title assault. Cracking five sixes and three fours, he entertained all and sundry with an undefeated 67 off 57 balls.

The in-form Nelson hardly played a secondary role though. He hammered 63 not out, including one six and ten fours, off just 42 balls.

Thoresby, who started the match with faint promotion hopes of their own, tried seven different bowlers, but all met the same fate.