Cuckney Cricket Club aim to move one step nearer to treble

Joyous scences at The Old County Ground,Brentwood as Cuckney celebrate the last gasp win -Pic by:Richard Parkes
Joyous scences at The Old County Ground,Brentwood as Cuckney celebrate the last gasp win -Pic by:Richard Parkes

Cuckney can still potentially win three trophies this season after they progressed to the national finals of the ECB Club Twenty20 competition last Sunday when they beat Essex Premier League side Brentwood.

They already have the Nottinghamshire T20 trophy in the bag and have a 19-point lead at the top of the league table; this weekend they travel to Birchover Park to take on West Indian Cavaliers.

The Cavs would surely have been pushing for the top spot but have lost nine games to the weather season as opposed to one for Cuckney.

The previous game between these two this summer was an incredibly close contest with Cuckney hanging on for a draw, nine wickets down but just four short of their target.

It was a day for the bowlers with Richard Stroh, Ian Parkin and Will Butler each taking three wickets and two each for Ricky Anderson and Usman Afzaal.

Fourth plays second as Caythorpe welcome the Nottinghamshire Academy with the visitors having the only realistic chance of spoiling Cuckney’s championship hopes; they will come up against with one of the strongest batting line-ups in the league with Darren Bicknell approaching 500 league runs and James Hawley looking to score his fourth hundred in five innings. Earlier this year, Bobby Gamble took 3-19 in the game between these two at Lady Bay and Brett Hutton (34*) ensured a draw after they slipped to 84 for 7 chasing 185.

Mansfield Hosiery Mills are sat in third and this weekend they travel to Plumtree looking to secure a top-three finish; the Millers are on a great run of form having won four of their last five matches and in Tom New, they have the outstanding performer in the league.

He has scored three hundreds in his 861 runs and must have his eye on the elusive 1000 run season target.

Plumtree have developed into a dogged, determined side that have secured impressive wins against Cuckney and Caythorpe and also crucially had recent successes against Wollaton and Papplewick.

Sam Storey has scored four half centuries and Matt Wood is hitting the ball very well.

Welbeck could still slip into the relegation zone but they have shown recent good form in beating both Wollaton and Worksop, the sides below them.

This weekend they host Clifton and they will keen to secure a second win against the triple champions after their 6 wicket victory at the Clifton Oval in June.

That match saw Robert French grab four wickets and runs for Martyn Dobson and Jonny Loates as they successfully chased 210. Clifton have only won one match since Richard Harris stepped aside as skipper in July and will want to end the season on an upward curve.

The big game at the bottom sees Wollaton travel to Papplewick in what could be a season-defining game for both of them.

A win for the visitors would see them climb out of the drop zone and swap placed with Papplewick; alternatively, a win for the home side would almost certainly secure they place in the league in 2013 and probably condemn Wollaton to relegation as the visitors final two games are against Caythorpe and Cuckney.

Papplewick’s run-in games are slightly less daunting with a trip to Mansfield Hosiery Mills and a final game against Worksop.

The home side had the better of the earlier encounter between these teams when Mark Nelson smashed 119 from a total of 266 and Wollaton skipper Tim Young struck 56 when his side avoided defeat at 182 for 9.

A Papplewick win would not only be bad news for Wollaton – it would also consign Worksop to relegation back to the Bassetlaw League.

This weekend, they travel to take on a Kimberley side that is looking for its first win since June when they beat Papplewick at home.

Worksop have struggled all season and have been in the bottom two since the start of the campaign but there have still been some standout performances; Gareth Pursehouse has passed 300 league runs and Wayne Spooner and Kelbert Walters have bagged 21 and 19 wickets respectively.

At one point, Kimberley were making great strides up the table but now sit in sixth; Akhil Patel has had a good season with the bat and Matt Wright is third in the list of league wicket-takers having secured 31 victims including 7-28 in the win against the Cavaliers.