Teenage prospects shine for Papplewick as Sri Lankan goes home

GONE HOME   --   Papplewick and Linby's Sri Lankan all-rounder Kosala Kulasekara, who could soon be facing England
GONE HOME -- Papplewick and Linby's Sri Lankan all-rounder Kosala Kulasekara, who could soon be facing England

Two promising 16-year-old youngsters took the chance to shine as PAPPLEWICK AND LINBY waved farewell again to their overseas star.

Sri Lankan all-rounder Kosala Kulasekara has returned home after being called up to his country’s international squad.

But fine performances by Joe Walker and Reuben Singh in Papplewick’s latest match at Worksop reminded all that plenty of home-grown talent remains untapped at the club.

The 29-year-old Kulasekara’s brief stay failed to inspire Papplewick to promotion back to the Notts Premier League.

But they are hoping he will return for a full season in 2015 if his last crack at cementing a permanent place in the Sri Lankan side does not materialise.

Kulasekara is viewed predominantly as a Twenty20 cricketer by his native country. But he has not given up hope of figuring in the one-day international series against England, which is in Sri Lanka later this year, and then of possibly winning a place in the squad for the World Cup next February.

As for Walker and Singh, they were the two shining lights for Papplewick in a dark defeat in their penultimate match of the Bassetlaw League, Championship season at Worksop.

A burst of five for 18 in only 6.2 overs by leg-spinner Singh helped to dismiss the home team for 159 -- after solid, lengthy spells by new-ball duo Richard Hodgkinson (three for 48 in 15 overs) and Ross Fitz-John (one for 35 in 15 overs) in the absence of skipper Jim Rhodes.

And then a patient knock of 52 (six fours) by opening bat Walker underpinned Papplewick’s reply. However, the rest of the locals’ batting left a lot to be desired. Indeed they slid to 19 for four and 57 for seven, with Harry Taylor (four for 47 in ten overs) infllicting most of the damage.

Charlie Blatherwick (ten) and Joe Gill (28) hung around with Walker, threatening to pull the game out of the fire with stands of 30 and 35. But then all three were removed by Wayne Spooner (three for 18 in 5.4 overs) to leave Papplewick 29 short on 130. The brave Walker was ninth man out.