Skegness 2nd (189-8) lost to Billingborough (190-6) by four wickets: GALLANT Gollop brothers Dave and Stu saw defending South Lincs and Border League Division One champions Billingborough home on Saturday as they finally got their season up and running.
Not at full strength for their trip to the seaside, Boro’ skipper Paul Goodwin won the toss and elected to field first with the threat of more rain in the air.
Skegness openers Alistair Ainworth (68) and Dan Nuttall (78) made an impressive start, with Billingborough’s Geordie Scott and Roy Tilley finding the going tough on a flat wicket.
Both openers passed their half centuries before a bowling change saw Steve Scott enter the attack.
That proved key, as the off spinner clean bowled Ainsworth, who played back to a full delivery with the score on 136.
Two overs later Boro’ were right back into the game, with Steve Scott (4-40) getting rid of Nuttall – who again played back to a full delivery.
Skeg’s 152-2 soon became 189-8, with Geordie Scott claiming 2-41 off 11 overs and with some shocking running resulting in two comical run outs.
After a hard-fought 45 overs, Skegness posted a modest 189-8.
Boro’s dynamic opening duo of Geordie Scott (12) and Dave Newman again started brightly, before a lapse in concentration the former leave a straight one off Nuttall.
The dangerous Newman (17) fell to Nuttall four overs later after mistiming a cut shot.
A mini-collapse followed, as 39-2 quickly turned into 76-4 with Steve Scott getting trapped LBW for 17 and Tom Harrison getting himself caught for 20.
The target of 190 was looking a long way away for the promotion favourites – and their situation got even worse when Richard Wells (8) and Tilley (0) headed back to the hutch with the score on 108-6 off 23 overs.
But Billingborough were saved by a match-winning partnership by the Gollop brothers.
With the total still in sight, both batsman scored freely – and although Skegness used their bowlers well, they just couldn’t get the break through.
Dave Gollop (69 not out) was in particularly destructive form, dispatching the leg spin of Harris into the car park for the first six of the day.
Not to be outdone, Stu Gollop (31 not out) soon got into the act freeing his arms and scoring boundaries as easy as ordering the pies.
The sizzling partnership rocketed Boro’s score up to 176-6 with six overs to go, with the winning runs arriving in the 41st over.
With 18 points under their belts, next up for Billingborough is a visit to Grantham this Saturday.