YOUNG GUNS GO FOR IT
It was another great weekend for Bready as they won convincingly at near neighbours Fox Lodge to sit proudly at the summit of the Premiership table.
Craig Young has played a pivotal role in their success. After struggles in previous years, what has made the difference to Bready in 2018?
“The two main reasons for our success this season has been the weather and also the fact that we have been able to put out the same team.
“We have also had more and more people coming to the party and contributing which is fantastic from a team perspective. It’s a great position to be in but there’s along way to go and we’ll be keeping our feet firmly on the ground.
“It’s probably the most open league I’ve seen in my time primarily because the teams you’d be expecting to challenge for the title haven’t been in great form and are nearer the bottom than the top. There’s a sign that they are improving gradually but we’re past the half-way point of the season and in the run in.
“We are just focussed on our own team and not too concerned with others. If we keep playing the way we are the results will take care of themselves.
Bready have bowled teams out four times in the eight Premier games to date for less than 100 with Young spearheading the most potent attack in the top flight. What’s made the difference this season?
“Again, I’d have to say the weather which have made the pitches harder than usual. Also from the feeling you get when the sun is shining. It lifts everyone and gets you through days when you’re not feeling 100% and a bit tired.
“The bowling unit is performing superbly. It’s not just me and Davy Scanlon. Gregory McFaul has been a revelation. He’s come in and has done brilliantly. Ryan Barr, Andy Lucas, Irosh have all chipped in. As we saw at Fox Lodge it’s great to have the back-up if myself or Davy have bad days or it’s not going our way. That depth is crucial and a reason for the confidence which is growing through the squad.”
Blighted by injuries in past seasons, Young has been an ever present for the Magheramason side this year.
“Touch wood, everything has gone really well this year. I’ve been helped by being able to train outdoors rather than in nets where you can’t really replicate conditions and get fully ready. Hopefully that will continue for the remainder of the campaign.
Young is part of the Warriors squad that is involved in the ongoing Championship clash with the Northern Knights at Bready. A win would hand Andy McBrine’s side the title and Young is relishing the prospect.
“It certainly won’t be easy. We’ve had some poor results in recent weeks after the toll the effort to beat The Knights took two weeks ago at Comber. We were probably guilty as we had one eye on this fixture. It’ll be a great reward for our hard work if we can lift the title, but there’s a lot of work to be done before that can happen.”
T20 FINALS DAY MOVED
Bready’s T20 final clash with Brigade scheduled to take place this Sunday at Ballyspallen has been switched.
A NW statement explained the rationale behind the move.
“Due to the fixture backlog currently facing Ballyspallen CC it has become necessary for the NWCU to find an alternative venue for this Sunday's T20 finals day.
“Thankfully, Glendermott CC have promptly accepted the opportunity to host the event so the two matches will go ahead at the scheduled times (Bonds Glen v Newbuildings at 12 noon and Bready v Brigade at 4pm).
“We would like to thank Ballyspallen for giving the Union time to source an alternative option and also Glendermott for agreeing to take the matches at short notice.”
The winners of the T20 cup will go forward and represent the NW in All-Ireland T20 finals day, which is scheduled this year for Bready on August 18th.
HISTORY OF STRABANE CC
Local cricket historian Billy Platt will be launching his latest book, “The History of Strabane CC 1859-2017” at Saturday’s league game between Strabane and Coleraine at Strabane Park.
The 600-page publication is the latest book published by the renowned author, and contains a definitive year-by-year account of the Tyrone’s side history.
There are many historic photographs with all personnel identified and is a must for all cricket fans. Copies will be available to purchase at the launch this weekend.
All proceeds from the book, once costs have been paid, will go the SANDS NI charity.
LOGUE STARS FOR ULSTER SCHOOLS
Strabane all-rounder Rhys Logue has been starring for Ulster Schools in their ongoing Scottish tour.
Logue took four wickets for 33 as Western Districts made 309 in an impressive display.
It wasn’t enough to prevent Ulster slipping to a 76-run loss, with Coleraine’s Marcus Poskitt top scoring with 69, and Brigade’s Kyle Magee making 27.
BREADY BOW OUT OF ULSTER PLATE
Bready Seconds bowed out of the Ulster Plate on Sunday, losing to Muckamore in a bowl-out, cricket’s equivalent of the penalty shoot out.
The Magheramason side failed to hit with any of their four attempts, while Muckamore struck twice.
Andy Lucas, Gregory McFaul, Cameron Knight and David Allen were the unfortunate players brave enough to step up and try to hit the target.
Donemana have the chance to meet Muckamore in the final when they travel to the Bleachgreen to take on Ardmore, after the scheduled tie was postponed at the first attempt due to a bereavement.