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Gallagher Women's Challenge Cup Semi-Final 1 Review - CSNI v Muckamore

Johnny Morton

The Gallagher Women's Challenge Cup semi-finals will be held on Sunday (8th August) as four teams battle it out for a place in the final at Carrickfergus CC later this month.

Amy Caulfield and William Sproule - PotM MuckamoreCSNI vs Muckamore

Previous round

Muckamore II 83-4 (B McCrea 23, J Robinson 24no, A Burton 2-17)
CSNI 87-3 (R Thomas 30, S Thomas 27)
CSNI beat Muckamore II by 7 wickets

Muckamore 193-1 (A Caulfield 76no, S Keates 61)
Carrickfergus 77-5 (L Passmore 30, N Niblock 3-0)
Muckamore beat Carrickfergus by 126 runs


After beating Muckamore's second team at Stormont on Tuesday evening, 2019 champions CSNI will take on their first string as they look to make it to a third consecutive final. The Belfast club have their sights set on a league and cup double this season with Rachael Thomas' side unbeaten in the Premier League, winning all six of their matches to date.

Muckamore also had a serene passage through to this stage of the competition as captain Amy Caulfield and Suzi Keates piled on the runs at Middle Road. In what is a replay of the 2019 final, Muckamore will be out to get some revenge as they aim to put their name on the trophy after a couple of near misses.

One to watch

Alison Cowan (CSNI)
Cowan was named 2019 Cricket Ireland Female Club Player of the Year for her role in helping CSNI lift the Challenge Cup – scoring 54* in the first round and 42 in the semis – and also scored heavily in their Premier League winning run. She's been just as important this time around, registering two league half-centuries and will likely have a big role to play on Sunday.

Amy Caulfield (Muckamore)
Caulfield is also captain of the NCU Women's side and has been a consistent source of runs for this Muckamore team.
She scored 44 in the 2019 final against CSNI in what was ultimately a losing effort for the Moylena outfit, but she's again shown her quality this season by hitting 76* in the previous round and struck league half-centuries against North Down and Waringstown.

Recent meetings

Rachael Thomas and Darren Ross - PotM CSNIPremier League (11th July, 2021)
Muckamore 76-6 (E Scott 4-17, J Gillan 2-8)
CSNI 77-2 (S Thomas 25, A Cowan 41no)
CSNI beat Muckamore by 8 wickets

Premier League (30th May, 2021)
CSNI 146-3 (S Thomas 38, J Gillan 33no, A Adair 23no, C Murray 2-29)
Muckamore 93-5 (J Logan 39no)
CSNI beat Muckamore by 53 runs

League (2020)
Muckamore 119-1 (A Caulfield 51ret, J Logan 42no)
CSNI 72-5 (J Giles 37, N Niblock 2-6)
Muckamore beat CSNI by 47 runs

Challenge Cup final (2019)
CSNI 103-7 (S Thomas 22, A Leckey 19, Z Baysting 2-12, J Davis 2-25)
Muckamore 101-7 (A Caulfield 44, J Davis 17, A Leckey 2-22, E Scott 2-15)
CSNI beat Muckamore by 2 runs

What did they say?

CSNI captain Rachael Thomas: "We are excited to be playing in the Challenge Cup semi-final and are looking forward to a competitive game! We have seen our squad growth in strength this season, with many of our younger players stepping up into key roles. We are particularly looking forward to seeing what youngsters Aoife Fisher and Annabelle Burton can do with the ball and what opener Sophie Thomas can do with the bat. We are pleased to have the experience of Ali Cowan back behind the stumps, as well as a number of other senior players supporting her in the field."

"Muckamore are a familiar side to us, having played them twice already in the Premier League and having faced their 2nd XI in the quarter-final. We know that they will be a strong side, with a good batting and bowling line up. Our games so far have been competitive and we hope that Sunday's match is no different. We're looking forward to Sunday's game and would be delighted to make the final, as we have done so in the last 3 seasons!"

Muckamore captain Amy Caulfield: "Muckamore are pleased to reach the semi-finals of the Challenge Cup this year and are looking forward to playing at Stormont on Sunday.

"CSNI will be tough opposition as we have experienced in both occasions in the Premier League, however we are hoping to continue to play with the confidence we showed in the quarter finals and showcase the talent that our team has."

Gallagher Women's Challenge Cup Summaries