Championship title to be decided by net run rate

Peter Allen pictured in action for Newbuildings during their Sammy Jeffrey Memorial Shield final against Creevedonnell. INLS3415-135KM
Peter Allen pictured in action for Newbuildings during their Sammy Jeffrey Memorial Shield final against Creevedonnell. INLS3415-135KM

In the Championship, the Sammy Jeffrey decider meant that only two league matches would go ahead, starting with a huge game for Fox Lodge at home to Killyclooney.

The two sides had met on Thursday evening in the semi-final of the Eric Cooke Cup but a very ordinary performance from the home team that night had seen them crash out to James Colhoun’s underdogs.

Things were much different this time though with the Magheramason men needing a win, and a fairly big one at that, if they were to set Drummond a good net run rate target when they take on Creevedonnell on Saturday in their final game.

It looks for all the world now as though NRR will decide the promotion position but Foxies went ahead with their game on Saturday rather than look for a postponement as their overseas man, Marco Marais was heading back to South Africa on Monday past.

Batting first, ’Clooney made 145 all out with Darren Moan making 24, Mark Gordon 23 and Jordan Connor 21 while Jason Milligan claimed four wickets and Gareth Heywood three for the hosts.

Milligan was on the money in the reply as well - his 59 as well as 27 from Luke Hayes and 23 from Marais getting them over the line in decent time with seven wickets to spare.

The question has now been asked of Steve Moore’s men and Saturday will now tell whether or not they can answer it.

In the other game, Burndennett guaranteed their safety with a 67-run win away at faltering Glendermott.

Half centuries from openers Mark Pollock (58) and Mark Doherty (54) got the visitors off to a flying start in this one while Lee Pollock’s 34 helped push the total up to 237 for 8.

Three wickets for Gordon Montgomery and two apiece for Ged Donnell and Trevor McDermott prevented the damage from being any worse but the reply was rarely on target.

An unbeaten 35 from bowler Stuart Cochrane was the best of it for Glendermott as three wickets apiece from Aidan Boyle and Mark Roulston helped Burndennett to an important win.

Meanwhile the Qualifying Three Cup final was also one-sided if truth be told as a strong Bready Fourths beat Drummond Seconds by an innings and some at a picturesque Ballyspallen.

Drummond were well on top early on, reducing Norman Allen’s team to 81-7 with Trevor Hamilton making 27 before runs from Trevor Austin (32), skipper Allen (29) and Johnny Rutherford (23) got the total up to 155.

Mark Cartwright (3-27), Damien Carlin (3-38) and Warren McIlmoyle (3-39) all bowled well however Drummond were less impressive with the bat- all out for 50 as Austin (4-13), Hamilton (3-11) and Craig Allen (2-7) applied the brakes to their innings.

Following on 105 behind, things were even worse second time around as the Roe Valley men could only muster 45 with man-of-the-match Hamilton helping himself to 4-7 while there were 2 wickets apiece for Austin, Rutherford and 14-year old Cameron Knight.

Finally in the Fleming-Agri Faughan Valley, Donemana will meet Eglinton in next month’s final, on Sunday September 13, after a decisive win in a high scoring semi-final at home to Strabane.

Ryan Gallager hit 10 sixes and 2 fours in a superb 82 while Tawanda Mupariwa added 37 as Strabane made 145-5 in their 15 overs.

It wasn’t to be enough however as William McClintock (35*), Andy McBrine (34), Ricky-Lee Dougherty (29) and Gary McClintock all combined to chase down the total in just 11 overs with eight wickets to spare.