There was return to form for Strabane’s Aaron Gillespie at home to Fox Lodge at the weekend against Fox Lodge. Following a run of three ducks in a week, he smashed 125 to take his tally to 600 runs for the season, and with Strabane still involved in the Irish Senior Cup, there is an outside chance he could close in on the magical 1000 run mark.

Gillespie shared a second-wicket stand of 247 with Rachit Gaur, who also scored a century in the maximum point win.

“It was a great win, where we had a complete performance,” said Gillespie. “We were strong in all three disciplines, but still left 50-60runs out in the Park after losing five quick wickets between overs 36-40, but overall very satisfied how we got the job done.

“The bowling unit backed up an excellent job by our batters bowling very well on a flat track, helped by some excellent catches. I also have to give a special mention to Rachit Gaur on his first hundred for the club and also Chathura Peiris claiming a hat trick after taking the final two wickets against Phoenix and picking up Barry Scott lbw first ball of the innings to claim 3 in 3.”

Strabane now face leaders Bready, who after their heroic, but ultimately unsuccessful effort to chase down 336 at Donemana, are suddenly very much in the sights of the chasing pack as the season enters the final phase.
Gillespie is relishing what will no doubt be a terrific tussle between two sides who would have been seen very much as outsiders at the start of the season.

“It’ll be an exciting game and one we can win with the momentum that we can carry into the game.

“Obviously Bready are a dangerous side with bat and the ball. They showed their depth and character in that narrow loss at Donemana, It’s a game we are looking forward to, and it should be a real battle with the title very much for grabs.”