The second round of the Irish Senior Cup has over the last number of season traditionally been the scene of a mass exodus of the NCU sides involved, not so yesterday. Lisburn and CIYMS both returned victorious from the North West and perhaps most impressive was Waringstown's victory over Bready at The Lawn.
On paper Bready held all the aces here with the home side missing the likes of Kyle McCallan and Johnny Bushe, but stand in captain James Hall lead from the front. Hall opened the innings with Andrew Cousins and the pair added 40 for the first wicket before Cousins chased one from Craig Young and Con de Lange to use football parlance hung on to one at first slip that was destined for the top corner.
Hall was making things look easy, reaching 46 off 51 balls with 9 fours before he glanced a leg side delivery which would have been wided had he left it alone and Chris Dougherty took a fine catch behind the wicket. Lee Nelson and Stuart Kidd advanced the total to 84 when Kidd was suicidally run out for 9. At drinks it was 86 for 3 and Simon Harrison and Lee Nelson composed a 67 run partnership that seemed to have Waringstown well placed to reach 250 plus.
Nelson was batting with growing authority but De Lange applied the brakes and only conceded 10 runs from his 10 over spell. When both departed in quick succession at 155 for 5 the momentum was back with Bready again. De Lange picked up both wickets, with Craig Young taking a fine catch in the deep to remove Nelson who was in the middle for 106 minutes, making his 66 from 89 balls with a six and 10 fours. Keith Morrison once again looked in great touch as the wickets tumbled around him, with Bready's Brian Scanlon picking up three.
The 49th over bowled by Scanlon was entertaining to say the least, 16 runs, two no balls, one a short pitched delivery and the second a beamer, a missed catch, the bowler picking up a second warning for the beamer, a failed slower ball. Waringstown finished on 204, Morrison on 33 not out from 37 deliveries faced, but at tea the home support certainly felt an opportunity had been lost to press home the early advantage.
Professional Tharaka Kottehewa shared the new ball with Simon Harrison and the initial impression was that he looked lively enough and he made the first breakthrough at 25 clean bowling Rankin for 9.
Harrison then took the vital wicket of De Lange with a tremendous low catch off his own bowling. With the score on 47 and just when you felt a bowling change was needed Harrison came up trumps again, this time James Hall taking a sharp chance at short mid wicket to get rid of Chris Dougherty for 22.
Robert Rankin looked to be timing the ball superbly as he and Stephen Clark added 28 for the third wicket, then the pendulum swung back in Waringstown's favour again. Clark set off for a single Gary Kidd picked up and an accurate throw left Jamie Matthews the simplest of tasks to remove the bails.
Once Keith Morrison caught Rankin off Hall and Brian Scanlon who was now batting with a runner skied one which was well held by Cousins to leave it 96 for 6 there was no way back for Bready.
Stuart Kidd came on in the 37th over and struck first ball, Harrison taking the catch at midwicket. Next it was Trevor Britton no need for the third umpire here doubtful if the batsman would even have been in the frame as he was comprehensively stumped by Matthews off a Gary Kidd wide.
Stuart Kidd wrapped things up first sending David Scanlon's off stump cart wheeling and then clean bowling Trevor Hamilton who made a defiant 23 as Bready were dismissed for 148, 56 runs short.
All and all an efficient rather than spectacular performance from the home side but one that certainly would instil optimism for the rest of the season. Certainly there was no lack of hunger or fight.