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Austin and McBrine lead Warriors fightback but Knights still in control

Cricket Ireland

Andrew Austin and Andrew McBrine led a Warriors fightback but their wickets late in the day ensured the Northern Knights stayed on course for victory on the second day of their Hanley Energy InterProvincial Championship clash at Comber. The pair added 152 for the 3rd wicket after the Warriors had lost the early wickets of Ross Allen and David Rankin having been asked to follow-on 167 runs adrift.

Bready teenager Austin grew in confidence as the innings progressed - both he and McBrine benefiting from early missed chances. The pair kept the Knights attack at bay for 39 overs before McBrine (71) was trapped lbw by the impressive Eaglestone who followed up his four wickets in the first innings with 3 for 29 in the second. Austin (84) followed just before bad light forced the teams off - his 170 ball vigil ended by an Eaglestone yorker.

Earlier the Warriors lower order almost managed to avoid the follow-on with Ricky-Lee Dougherty top scoring with 46, and important contributions from Oraine Williams (43), Craig Young (30), Stuart Thompson (29) and Sauraj Randiv (21). Dougherty and Young's 9th wicket stand of 46 in just 6 overs took the Warriors to within 24 of the follow-on target but Eaglestone ensured they would have to bat again as he bowled both Young and Scanlon in successive overs.

Knights need to win the match to keep alive their hopes of claiming the title from Leinster Lightning. Play on the final day gets under way at 11 o'clock.

NORTHERN KNIGHTS 400-6 dec (A Dennison 206, G Wilson 63, C Young 3-85)
NW WARRIORS 233 (54.1 overs; RL Dougherty 46no, O Williams 43, C Young 30, P Eaglestone 4-54, Nat Smith 2-35, J Mulder 2-50, R McKinley 2-62)
and 184-4  (53 overs, A Austin 84, A McBrine 71, P Eaglestone 3-29)

Play resumes at Comber on Wednesday morning at 11am.