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Gallagher Women's Challenge Cup final - Match Report
A Player of the Match performance from Abbi Leckey inspired CSNI to a two-run victory in a thrilling Gallagher Women's Challenge Cup final at Stormont. Leckey scored 19 with the bat and took 2-22 with the ball on the way to lifting the trophy, meaning that the Stormont outfit have secured their first Women's Challenge Cup title.
Having come in with the score reading 67-5, she helped propel CSNI to 103-7 in their 20 overs. Sophie Thomas was the highest scoring batter with 22 and Sarah Rountree added 12. The pick of the Muckamore bowlers was Zoe Baysting who collected 2-12 off her four over allocation.
In the chase, an opening stand of 30 between Amy Caulfield and Susanne Morrison-Keates saw Muckamore off to a great start. Caulfield remained and was the anchor for the team. As wickets started to fall at regular intervals, Caulfield absorbed the pressure and kept the scoreboard ticking along.
For as long as she remained in the middle, Muckamore would have been slight favourites. However, a stunning piece of fielding from Andrea Adair meant that Caulfield was run out for 44 with nine balls remaining in the match and Muckamore needing a further 15 runs to secure victory.
With 10 runs needed off the final over, the large crowd were in for a real treat. Jo Davis was run out for 17 halfway through the over and with the next ball Leckey bowled Rachael Douglas for a duck. The 18-year-old held her nerve, conceding one run off the final couple of deliveries to seal victory.
Civil Service now turn their attention to the league. They have two games left to play and remain in pole position to do the double this season.
CSNI 103-7 (S Thomas 22, A Leckey 19, Z Baysting 2-12, J Davis 2-25)
Photo credit: Ian Johnston, Cricket Europe
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