The NW Warriors spurned a golden opportunity to beat defending champions Leinster Lightning in their T20 interpro clash last night (FRI) at Bready.
Three wickets from Ballyspallen teenager Graham Kennedy - who also ran out Kevin O'Brien - saw Lightning dismissed for just 99, with two wickets apiece also for Irish internationals Stuart Thompson and Craig Young.
Simi Singh's four-over spell for just eight runs stifled the Warriors reply in the early stages, but Ireland captain William Porterfield looked to have won the game for the Warriors as he top-scored with 38 to take the hosts to 70 for 2 in reply.
However, his dismissal, as he played on off the bowling of Lightning skipper George Dockrell (3 for 15), opened the door for the champions who fought back strongly.
With two balls remaining, the Warriors needed five to win, but Peter Chase bowled Kennedy with the penultimate delivery and Andy Britton with the last to seal what looked like an unlikely win at the half-way stage.
Meanwhile in Cork, Northern Knights earned their first win of the season with a 39-run verdict over Munster Reds at The Mardyke.
New Irish T20 skipper Gary Wilson stole the show as he struck 9 fours and 3 sixes in a top score of 80 from just 45 balls.
He shared a 4th wicket stand of 84 with Greg Thompson, who also cleared the ropes 3 times as well as clubbing 4 fours in an unbeaten 50 from just 31 deliveries as the Knights posted 195 for 5.
Max Sorensen thumped 4 sixes in a quickfire 48, as he and Stephen Doheny shared a third wicket stand of 86, but the required rate was always too much.
Doheny hot 5 fours and 2 sixes as he made 62 from 47 balls, but Munster finished on 156 for 6 - two wickets apiece for James Shannon (2-29) and Peter Eakin (2-34).
All four teams will play at Pembroke next month as the T20 series is played to a conclusion over a three-day period at Sydney Parade.