CRICKET: Brigade move into top spot

Jack Glenn (snr) receives a cheque for the proceeds of the recent Jack Glenn Memorial Day at the Rectory from members of the organising committee- Fred Simpson, Brian Dougherty and Garth Watson. All the money raised will be going to the charities involved in the #GetJackBack operation.
Jack Glenn (snr) receives a cheque for the proceeds of the recent Jack Glenn Memorial Day at the Rectory from members of the organising committee- Fred Simpson, Brian Dougherty and Garth Watson. All the money raised will be going to the charities involved in the #GetJackBack operation.

Donemana’s unbeaten league run came to an end at Bready when although missing four of their top players they went down by 113 runs.

The home side scored 151 thanks to a seventh wicket stand by skipper David Scanlon and Ryan Barr which was worth 78 runs before Barr was out for 32 with the skipper undefeated with 46.

Scanlon then went through the Donemana side with figures of 5 for 3 as they were shot out for just 38.

Brigade moved into top spot after two victories over the weekend. Firstly they had a two wicket win at Eglinton, on Sunday, before seeing off Bready on Sunday.

On Saturday the Villagers scored 145 with Ross Allen top scoring with 41 before after a couple of scares the visitors got home thanks to 37 from Nick Donnell, while on Sunday they had a three wicket win over Bready. The other two games on Saturday were postponed.

There are just two games down for decision this weekend as the race hots up at both ends of the table.

Donemana v Drummond

With Donemana’s ground unplayable this game may be switched to the Limavady men’s ground.

The Holm men suffered their first defeat last Saturday and now know that they may need to win their remaining two games to secure the title, they will be hoping to have a full strength side available.

Drummond are already relegated and maybe without a few players, even if they are it would be the shock of the season if they were to get their first win.

Prediction: Donemana.

Eglinton v Ardmore

The home side want that fourth place and after losing last week Bready have closed the gap, they have had a decent season and on their day are a match for anyone in the division.

Ardmore are fighting to avoid the play off they know that they might need to win two of their remaining three games and one of them is against third from bottom Fox Lodge, if the home side are up for it they may just be good enough.

Prediction: Eglinton.

Meanwhile in the Long’s Supervalu Championship Strabane who hold the upper hand in the race for automatic promotion ahead of their huge clash at Ballyspallen this Saturday.

The Red Caps hold a 10-point lead already and also have a game in hand therefore even a defeat to the second-placed side might not be enough to de-rail their charge.

’Spallen simply have to win and then hope that the leaders slip up against either Bonds Glen or Burndennett, however a victory for Tommy Barr’s men might well see the trophy handed over on Saturday night.

The two sides have been neck-and-neck throughout the second half of the season and whichever one of them is left to contest the promotion play-off will go into that with a genuine chance. It will be of little consolation of course unless they win it and it will be interesting to hear skipper Lee Ritchie’s thoughts after a season that has promised so much.

As for who’ll win on Saturday well that’s anyone’s guess.

What you can expect however is that the Red Caps will travel at full strength- and if they do, it will be hard for the hosts to post the big-margin win they probably need.

Ritchie’s team however will be bang up for it too and are likely to be backed by a decent crowd. It should be an entertaining afternoon, that’s for sure.

After that, all eyes will be on the quartet of teams at the bottom as they go in search of those survival points and as luck would have it- they all meet each other over the course of the weekend.

Bottom side Bonds Glen have two home games to try to secure their safety- entertaining Burndennett on Saturday and Ballyspallen on Sunday.

Both games are huge but the crucial one could be against fellow-strugglers Burndennett who have found a little bit of form in recent weeks.

The Bee Gees still have another crack at the Saints after this as well so all is far from lost, but even one win this weekend would really set the cat among the pigeons.

Glendermott are the visitors at the Boathole on Saturday and despite their win over Ballyspallen last time, Alan Johnson’s men could really do with a win here.

This is the Bonds Street team’s final league match of the summer and only a win would leave them reasonably safe.

Obviously the home team’s need is just as great but they have two games next weekend if things don’t fall into place on Saturday.

The final match of the day is the clash of the third and fourth teams, Newbuildings and Killyclooney - two sides who threatened to be in the shake-up for the first half of the summer.

Much will depend on getting personnel out for both clubs but with little at stake, that could prove difficult.