All-rounder Mitchell English was the key man as a low-scoring local derby between Thoresby Colliery and Cuckney 2nd turned into a nailbiting thriller.
English took three wickets as Bassetlaw League, Championship title-chasing Thoresby bowled out their visitors for just 146. And then he fired 72, which proved crucial as the hosts squeezed home by one wicket after a crazy collapse.
While opener English was at the crease, Thoresby seemed to be cruising. He struck 13 boundaries and helped the score to 109-2 before he became the second of five victims for Cuckney bowler David France (5-42 in 13.5 overs).
But once he had gone, France and Mark Langford (3-35 in 11 overs) got stuck into the home batting and before you knew it, Thoresby were 135-8! As the nerves jangled, last pair Jack Dickens and Jack Willis edged them over the line.
Earlier Willis had taken 3-17 from 15 very tidy overs to supplement English’s return of 3-34 from seven overs. Rehan Ahmed also bowled well, taking 2-35 from 12 overs, as Cuckney struggled top find any rhythm once an opening stand of 44, bossed by David Taylor (28), had been broken. Cuckney nosedived to 113-8 before a late cameo from tailender Langford (38no).
The result lifted Thoresby into third place in the table, above Clipstone Welfare, who didn’t have a game. However, they trail by 38 points leaders Papplewick and Linby, who underlined again how difficult they are going to be to catch with a 125-run demolition of Ordsall Bridon after amassing 305-8. Gareth Blinkhorn took 7-46 from 13.4 overs to skittle Ordsall for 180.
DEFIANT Blidworth Colliery Welfare held on by the skin of their teeth to a losing draw against high-riding North Wheatley in The Championship of the Bassetlaw League.
A superb six-wicket hail by Gareth Ellis (6-51 in 13.3 overs) restricted Wheatley to a total of 220, of which Luke Istead hit 66 and skipper Jonny Loates 56. And although Blidworth started well in reply, easing to 142-3 in the hands of opener Ruve Louw (56) and Andrew Watson (40), they suddenly slumped to 168-7 and looked sure to lose. But they finished on 179-9 to pick up eight points that keep them clear of the relegation zone.
Just below them are Edwinstowe, who boosted their drop fears considerably with a fine three-wicket win at home to Notts and Arnold Amnateurs. Chasing 211-8, they were steered home by 52 from skipper Andrew Edwards and an unbeaten 48 from Pascal Broadley, who shared a key unbroken stand of 49 with Justin Pretorius (26no).