Final day title showdown - Notts Premier League preview

The final round of Nottinghamshire Premier League matches takes place this Saturday with Cuckney in the driving seat, needing 13 points to secure successive championship titles.
All smiles for Lewis Bramley (right) as he team mates congratulate him after his  match winning six   -Pic by:Richard ParkesAll smiles for Lewis Bramley (right) as he team mates congratulate him after his  match winning six   -Pic by:Richard Parkes
All smiles for Lewis Bramley (right) as he team mates congratulate him after his match winning six -Pic by:Richard Parkes

But the fixture computer has thrown them a tough match as their final game will be at home against Rolls Royce, who themselves could secure the title if they beat Cuckney and the Cavaliers slip up. The home side could have secured the trophy last week, but Caythorpe’s Kafeel Shafique had other ideas as his stunning return of 7-59 bundled them out for 142.

That was only the second loss of the season for the top-placed side, the first of which came against their opponents this week.

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That match in June saw Cuckney dismissed for 127 with Ben Phillips and Adam Shepherd each taking four wickets.

Rolls’ chances of securing the trophy depend on them defeating Cuckney, restricting them to six points or fewer and the West Indian Cavaliers securing no more than 13 points.

The Cavs travel to the Clifton Oval to try to notch up a season double over the home side after they bundled their opponents out for just 99 earlier this year, with Bilal Shafayat grabbing 5-16.

Akhil Patel is their form batsman, having scored 836 runs at an average of 44, including 137 not out in their six wicket win over Kimberley last week.

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Clifton are safe from relegation but will want to end their season on a high after a defeat last week to South Notts rivals Plumtree, when David Lucas took 3-61 but dropped a vital catch as they lost with three balls to spare.

At the bottom of the table, Farnsfield retain a slim hope of ending outside the bottom two as they welcome an in-form Plumtree side to Station Lane.

In 2009, these sides met on the final day of the season when Plumtree could not save themselves from relegation despite securing a close one-wicket win, a result that saw Farnsfield also relegated. The visitors have found a decent run of form recently with a close defeat to Cuckney followed by scoring 310-4 against Kimberley and defeating Clifton at home last week.

Matt Milnes has recently made his debut for Durham second XI and took 4-45 against Clifton before hitting a match-winning 39 from 27 balls.

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Farnsfield will want to secure their second win of the season over Plumtree after Graeme White (6-21) and Matt Sisson (80*) combined to score a nine-wicket win, but may be without skipper Paul Franks, who is in the Notts side currently playing Middlesex at Lord’s.

Caythorpe travel to Kimberley looking to give Darren Bicknell a good send-off as he retires from competitive cricket, and he has had another good season with six half centuries in his total of 636 runs.

Jim Hindson leads the bowling unit with 43 wickets with a best of 5-28 against Welbeck. Kimberley skipper Sam Ogrizovic will be playing against one of his former sides and will hope to quickly gather the two points that will ensure they cannot slip into the relegation zone.

Relegated Papplewick finish off their current spell in the Premier League with an away trip to Lady Bay to take on the Nottinghamshire Academy, with the home side guaranteed fourth spot regardless of the result.

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The match could be considered a dead rubber but Papplewick will be playing for pride and the county side players fighting for further opportunities with Notts.

The Academy have not won since the victory over Plumtree in June but will want to repeat their win at Papplewick Hall earlier this year when there were hundreds for Sam Kelsall and Sam Wood and 64 not out for Jack McIver at the top of the Papplewick order.

The final games sees Welbeck travel to the Fieldings to take on a Mansfield Hosiery Mills side that has lost their last four completed games.

Welbeck could potentially end up on equal points with the Mansfield side if they secure a comprehensive win.

Hosiery Mills skipper Matt New took four wickets to help his side to an eight-wicket win when they last met, despite a patient 60 from Jonny Loates.