Trent Bridge break turns Fletcher into an all-rounder

Notts CCC giant Luke Fletcher produced a terrific all-round performance to inspire Rolls-Royce Leisure to Notts Premier League victory at Welbeck Colliery last Saturday.

The 24-year-old Fletcher was allowed to take a rare break from Notts’s fine start to the new season to take his place as Rolls’s senior pro.

And he didn’t disappoint, proving that he’s no mug with the bat as well as a serious new-ball bowler.

In his more recognised role, Fletcher took four for 21 from 8.4 overs to help shoot out Welbeck for 166.

And then, going in at number three with the bat, he hit a responsible 73 off 110 balls.

Smacking two sixes and nine fours, Fletcher shared 89 for the third wicket with Liam Andrews (37, six fours) -- after Rolls had lost both openers, Damn Birch and Adeel Shafique, cheaply.

By the time he’d been caught by Andrew Marchant off the home side’s most effective bowler, Ashley Willis (two for 45 in 11 overs), Rolls were within 20 runs of their target, which was duly reached in the 39th over.

Tom Lungley (17 not out) polished off the last few runs with the help of three boundaries.

Earlier Fletcher had removed two of Welbeck’s top-order dangermen, Adam Burgess and Matthew Higgins, and returned later to mop up the tail.

He received excellent support from new signing Adam Shepherd, who returned three for 32 from two similar spells embracing nine overs.

The only time Rolls were not on top was during a fourth-wicket partnership between Welbeck captain and opener Martin Dobson and number five bat Robert French.

The prolific Dobson defied the locals to the tune of 128 balls, carrying his bat to make 79 not out (two sixes ans four fours).

And his stand of 113 with French (47, five fours) threatened to haul Welbeck out of their mire.

But then Mathew Roberts trapped French lbw on his way to figures of three for 16 in four overs. And wobbly Welbeck proceeded to collapse with the loss of seven wickets for 42 runs in under an hour.

Roberts, Shepherd and Fkletcher all struck twice more to leave Dobson stranded without a paddle at the other end.