Three new Sri Lankan signings will leave Spalding Town Cricket Club’s Lincs ECB Premier League rivals in a spin this season.
Town, who superbly avoided relegation last season in their first year in the county top flight, have added Thivanka Rajaratne, Wamanga Perera and Nuwan Jayasena to their ranks over the winter close season.
Rajaratne is a top order batsman who can bowl off-spin, middle-order ace Perera bowls seam and Jayasena is another off-spinner who can also bat.
All three played for Clacton in the East Anglian Premier League last season.
They impressed skipper Rob Ambrose on debut last weekend, with Rajaratne making 84 and taking three wickets in Town’s Sunday success over a Retford-based side.
A day earlier, Perera snared two wickets in a six-wicket loss at Wisbech Town, with Spalding unable to defend 158. Josh Newton top scored with 47.
Despite the Saturday setback, Ambrose is in a buoyant mood ahead of this Saturday’s Lincs ECB Premier League opener against Market Deeping at Spalding Grammar School (noon).
He said: “We’re ready for the first game and I’m personally a lot happier with how we’re looking now as opposed to last season.
“The three Sri Lankan lads have settled in superbly. They’ve got an awful lot of ability and personality-wise they’re very down to earth.
“This year we’ve got a core of ten players that will be available every week, which will certainly make us much stronger.
“That’s not to say we’ll have it easy. It’s a very strong league and the aim is to once again stay up. If we can finish one higher than last year, I’ll be delighted.
“We’ll have a lot more steel and our spin options should make a difference.”
Spalding have also been boosted by the news that last year’s star man Warren Nel will stay with the club.
Ambrose told The Voice that the South African – who scored 934 runs and took 33 wickets last term – had ‘sizeable offers’ to go elsewhere, but he’s decided to stay put.
Town are also expecting big things from their local contingent, with Luke Whitworth really catching the eye last weekend.