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Rolls Royce lead cut to two points

Rolls Royce remain at the top of the Nottinghamshire Cricket Board Premier League table but had their lead over Cuckney cut to just two points when they fell to a losing draw at home to Kimberley.

The visitors batted first on losing the toss and grabbed full batting bonus points when they closed on 240 for five with Bharat Popli scoring his maiden NPL ton with an innings of 133 from 143 balls.

The increasingly reliable Sam Johnson supported him with 54 not out after Jon Terry hit 30 at the top of the order. Kimberley nearly pulled off an unexpected win after they reduced Rolls to 221 for nine in their 50 overs.

Dan Birch found form with 64 and Luke Fletcher struck 84 with the Kimberley bowling attack spearheaded by Atif Sheikh (4-56) and spinner Alex King (3-70).

That result yielded only seven points for the leaders and Cuckney advanced after securing 16 with their winning draw at home to Mansfield Hosiery Mills.

The home side batted first and raced to 268 for nine with Neville Talbot hitting a rapid-fire century (117 from 65 balls with eleven 4s and eight 6s) after Nick Langford had earlier scored 36.

Keshara Jayasinghe (4-59) and Matt Wright (3-78) led the visitors attack. The Millers were never in danger of being bowled out and ended on 223 for five after Gareth Curtis (61) and Tom New (44) batted well and 15 year-old Joe New struck 55.

The PCG has been the scene of some low-scoring affairs this year but 600 runs were scored on Saturday, the highest of the day.

Papplewick skipper Jim Rhodes called correctly at the toss and asked Plumtree to have first knock, a ploy that backfired when the home side smashed 318 for three with David Bedingham (139 from 140 balls) and Joe Tetley (118 from 132) putting on 268 for the second wicket, just eight runs shy of the NPL record.

On a good batting track, Papplewick belied their bottom spot with a solid run chase with Jamie Peat (94) and Mark Nelson (46) keeping them in the game; they closed on 282 for seven with Mohsin Qayyum taking 3-56.

The closest game of the day took place at Caythorpe where Clifton pulled off a remarkable win with two balls to spare. The visitors chose to bat first and was bowled out for 217 in 48.5 overs with Matt Dowman taking 4-45 and James Hawley 3-15.

Caleb Mierkalns top –scored for the visitors with 44, supported by Jarrod Coombe (35) and Richard Harris (37). Caythorpe therefore had 51 overs to chase their target but they were dismissed for 201 in the 51st over. Richard Wyld took 3-41 and Martin Weightman 3-52 with Steve Allcoat scoring 87 and Darren Bicknell 37.

Farnsfield were missing their professionals Paul Franks and Graeme White and without them slipped to a 105 run loss at the hands of the West Indian Cavaliers at Birchover Park. The Cavs struck 249 for eight with Usman Afzaal striking 57, Bilal Shafayat 65 and Sadiq Hassan 30.

Andrew Bell was the leading Farnsfield bowler taking 4-80 including a hat trick. The visiting batters will be disappointed to have been dismissed for 144 inside 40 overs with only Callum McKenzie (30) and James Smith (39) getting to grips with the Cavaliers attack with two wickets each for Aatif Ali, Ata-ur Rehman, Afzaal and Shafayat.

The final game saw the Nottinghamshire Academy secure a seven wicket win over Welbeck at Lady Bay. The visitors were limited to 202 for eight in the first innings with George Bacon (3-28) and Adam Tillcock (3-50) starring with the ball.

Several Welbeck batters got a start without kicking on – Olly Pringle again impressed with the bat with 51 with support coming from Matt Higgins (31) and Jon Ball (30). The home side raced to victory in just 37.3 overs led by Hassan Azad (89 not out) and Tillcock (52 not out) with Anuj Dal making 31.