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Gallagher Senior and GMcG Junior Cup Semi Final News from the Weekend

Richard White (NCU PRO)
& Wylie McKinty

It was another thrilling weekend of cricket in the Northern Cricket Union, with CSNI and Waringstown progressing to the Gallagher Senior Challenge Cup Final.

Waringstown defeated CIYMS in a thriller by one wicket, off the final ball of the game. CIYMS had set a formidable 290 for 5, with Chris Dougherty (78), Matt McGillivray (73), and Ryan Hunter (48 not out), the main contributors. 

CIYMS were in control when they reduced Waringstown to 52-3 with their seamers bowling fantastic spells. However, Shaheen Khan scored a sublime 126, Adam Dennison (45) and Marcus McClean (42), but in the end it came down to last pair Gary Kidd and Phil Eaglestone to get the holders over the winning line running a bye off the last ball of the match.

In the other semi-final CSNI overcame Instonians by 72 runs. Batting first the Belfast sides innings was on to the 3rd new ball by the end of the 4th over as the first two were hit out of the Shaw's Bridge ground and could not be found. CSNI amassed 278 for 9 with no one scoring above 50. Six of the top order batsmen scored 20 or more with the top scores from captain James Kennedy (41) and Aaron Wright (47).

Remarkably Instonians were reduced to 1 for 2 and then 6 for 4 as Andre Malan and Graeme McCarter picked up two wickets apiece including Ireland International James Shannon who was caught at slip by Ireland's T20 Captain Gary Wilson. Instonians captain Andrew White steadied the ship with a composed 59 but when he went the game seemed up for Instonians and despite late order contributions of 35 runs from both Robert McKinley and Stephen Bunting no one could not stop an impressive win for CSNI.

The Gallagher Senior Challenge Cup Final will be played at The Green, Comber, on Friday 27th July.

The Goldblatt McGuigan Junior Cup Final will be contested on the 4th August at Moylena, Muckamore, between Cliftonville Academy and Templepatrick. The Section 2 teams defeated Carrickfergus Seconds and Lisburn Seconds, by 16 runs and 149 runs respectively.

Cliftonville Academy set Carrickfergus Seconds a formidable total of 250 for 6 to chase when batting first thanks in the main to 50's from Johnny Terrett and Davy Menaul. Best of the Carrick bowling was Adam Fittis who took 3 wickets for 39 and Robbie Moffett with 2 for 43.

In reply the Junior 1 team fell 16 runs short despite 61 from Max Burton and 37 each from Richard Hood and Stephen Grant. Waqas Muhammad picked up 2 for 52 and Chris Halliday 2 for 35.

Cliftonville Academy's opponents in the final will be Templepatrick who had a comfortable passage to the final. Batting first a second wicket partnership of 94 got the innings of to a great start with James Jackson scoring 74 and captain Ross Bryans 44. Despite losing the next 3 wickets quickly Michael Stewart with 50no ensured Templepatrick reached 247 for 9 in their 50 overs.

In reply former winners Lisburn Seconds were never in the hunt as they were reduced to 6 for 3 and then 34 for 5 with only captain Gavin McGill making any significant contribution with 42. When he became John Busby's 4th wicket (on his way to taking 5 for 35) the match was all but over for Lisburn and when the last wicket was taken by Phil Kernaghan (2 for 24) they had been bowled out for 98 to lose by 149 runs.