Cricket: Drummond lose to Rush in National Cup Final

Stevie Moore top scored for Drummond with 35 runs against Rush.
Stevie Moore top scored for Drummond with 35 runs against Rush.

Promotion to the top flight of North West cricket and an appearance in the National Cup final constitutes a fantastic season for Drummond however it could easily have been more after the Roe Valley side were only just touched off by Dublin outfit Rush in Sunday’s decider at Strabane Park.

Skipper Steve Moore opted to bat first on winning the toss and after losing Andy Christie early on, a 40-run partnership between Chris Moore (20) and Kyle Morrow (16) meant that the local side were back on top.

Once those two had gone however, and the fit-again Richard McDaid followed soon after, the advantage shifted again as Rush professional Lynal Jansen (3-14) led the fightback.

Drummond kept going despite that and a 69-run partnership between skipper Moore (35) and Adam McDaid (34) seemed to have put them in front again before the pendulum swung once more. Rush introduced a seventh bowler into the attack in Dean Brogan and the spinner finished things off very quickly with a really good spell of 4-26.

Despite looking likely to record something over 200, Drummond were all out for 171 and given the quality of the Leinster team’s batting it looked nowhere near enough.

Stephen Doheny and professional Jansen posted 41 for the first wicket as the southerners began the reply in good style before Neal Stewart and Steve Moore again put Drummond in the driving seat. Stewart bowled very quickly to claim figures of 3-21 while at the other end Moore (3-36) claimed the key wickets of Jansen, Iqbal and Sadat Gull to give his side real hope.

It wasn’t to last however as a really good partnership between Eoghan Conway and Allan Eastwood took the game away from the North West side for what looked like the last time. These two added a vital 72 runs to the total and although Drummond came back again to remove the pair of them, they just couldn’t get over the line.

Another 25 runs, or a few less ‘wides’ could easily have seen the cup stay in the North West but as it was, a steady 18 not out from Niall Mullan nursed Rush home with just two wickets in hand.