Fans were heard to ask at the Pia Bella stadium last Saturday, was the game between the Lapta Lasses and Doğanköy Dollies the most exciting ever Creditwest Ladies Cricket League game? The players certainly thought so.

The much fancied Lapta team, opened with Captain Gina Mapp and Ann McLaughlin. Their hard hitting smashing 45 runs, with them only being out once when McLaughlin was bowled by Gloria Garcia. Next in was Liz Turner and Steph Routledge who added another 20 runs, again only losing one wicket when Steph Routledge was run out. The pick of the bowlers being Gloria and Annicel Garcia who went for 5 and 11 respectively.

The 65 scored by the Lasses looked daunting and as the Dollies Captain Sarah Sandford had said in her team talk between the innings, the only way they were going to get close was if they attack from the first ball. The experienced pair of Lynn Holman and Linda Hurley were sent in and took their instructions to heart, with Holman straight driving a 6 off the third ball, followed by a 3. With Hurley strongly supporting the tables shifted for the first time towards the Dollies. Then Mapp struck first having Hurley caught behind by Routledge, then next ball dismissing Holman in exactly the same manner.

Left Gina Mapp and Lynn Holman                    Right Gina Mapp and Gloria Garcia

There were high hopes of the first ever TRNC Ladies hat-trick, but only a dot ball followed. However, Mapp still finished her bowling conceding just one run and the Dollies early promise had fizzled away. The first pair ended on 19 and were replaced by the big hitting Sarah Sandford who also scored a six and the more patient Gloria Garcia. They accumulated a very respectful 21 having only suffered one dismissal when Garcia was run out trying to steal an extra run. With 26 needed to secure what had appeared at the half way point a very unlikely win, the final pairing was dominated by Annicel Garcia, who worked hard to keep her team in contention. Several times Doğanköy had fought back from what had appeared to be terminal situations, but with the penultimate over about to be bowled, 21 were still required and the odds very much favoured the girls from the west side of Girne. Six balls later, this had been reversed and victory looked a real possibility for the first time in the match with just 9 needed. On came to Lapta’s excellent Mapp, whose bowling had wrought havoc earlier in the Dollies innings. Again she was the difference, conceding just 4 runs and bringing her side home with a 4 run win.

Afterwards, Doğanköy Dollies’ Sarah Sandford said she was delighted with her girls, they never gave up and so nearly snatched a wonderful win. Gina Mapp felt it had been the narrowest of wins for her side and both captains agreed it had been one of the best games they had ever played in.

Left Lynn Holman and Gina Mapp                 Right Gloria Garcia and Gina Mapp

Coach Nigel Holman added, he was excited by the players’ progress and particularly the new ladies bowling techniques. Kevin Mapp, typical of a scorer’s analytical thinking, was keen to tell us, it’s hard to imagine a tighter league with just 3 points dividing the teams.

The next coaching session is next Saturday (25th November) 11am at the Pia Bella Stadium, then continues every week. Please come along, its great fitness, no experience or equipment are needed. Contact Gina 0533 8332069.