Busy weekend ahead in NW
There's another busy weekend ahead for NW Premier Division sides with the start of the new T20 blast on Friday night followed by a full programme of league fixtures on Saturday.
Saturday's league games start as Donemana attempt to extend their winning start at the top of the table.
The former champions go to newly-promoted Ballyspallen at the weekend and although they will be favourites to win, this is certainly no 'gimme'.
'Spallen got their first points on the board last time out with a valuable win at home to Eglinton and they will also be keen to keep the momentum going.
Skipper Adam McDaid has a decent squad at his disposal, and they were boosted last week with the addition of McDaid's former Drummond team-mate, Andy Christie.
The Roe Valley side's batting looks decent with Brendon Louw, Graham Kennedy, Stephen Kennedy, Kyle Morrow and the two Averills complimenting McDaid and Christie. The key will be however whether their bowling stands up against that Donemana order.
The Holm side probably has a bit to prove after a very rare trophy-less 2018, and if they are to stake a claim for this season's title, then they certainly need to be winning games like this.
Skipper Andrew Riddles looks to have his side focused on the job at hand and there has never been any doubt about the quality in his ranks. If the same Donemana team turns up here that we have seen in each of their games so far this season, there can only be one outcome.
Brigade have also emerged with all guns blazing at the start of this campaign and they will be fancied to claim the points at Sandel Lodge on Saturday.
The Beechgrove outfit look to have found a solid balance this time around and comfortable wins over Glendermott and Bready have seen them start with full points as well.
Gareth McKeegan has hit the ground running at the top of the order, and Kyle Magee looks to have benefited from a solid season last year and plenty of winter training.
David Barr and iftikhar Hussain have also been among the runs already this year while skipper Andy Britton has a plethora of bowling options as good as any around.
The one drawback for the visitors is that Ryan Macbeth finished the game against Bready on Sunday on crutches and is likely to be unavailable for this weekend.
Coleraine picked up very valuable points last time out when they narrowly accounted for Ballyspallen, and it was their big two- Graham Hume and Scott Campbell who did the damage there.
A lot will depend on availability in the home ranks, but with or without their key players it is difficult to see Coleraine winning this.
Champions Bready have had a hit or miss start to their campaign, and Davy Scanlon's side really need to win at Eglinton if they are to kick-start their title defence.
Marcus Poskitt has been an excellent addition to the Magheramason outfit's batting line-up, but it is an order that has yet to really fire.
Irosh Samarasooriya is more than capable of holding the batting together, however he will need more support in the top order if Bready are to complete for more silverware.
They are certainly capable, but with Eglinton still missing their talisman Stuart Thompson, the champions really need to take advantage here.
The villagers posted a massive win at Strabane Park on Sunday and will feel that they are capable of beating anyone on their day, but without Thompson they look overly reliant on Mike Erlank.
The final game of the day on Saturday sees Glendermott take on Strabane at the Rectory.
The hosts also got off the mark for the season when they proved too strong for the reigning champions last time out.
Keeshan Wijerathne has certainly boosted the home team's attack this year and with the two Cookes, and some in-form players in Gordon Montgomery, Alan Johnson and Jason Lynch backing him up, there is no shortage of confidence.
Strabane will be boosted by the fact that they always seem to fare well at the Bonds Street venue, however the drawback for Peter Gillespie team is that they have yet to record a league win.
The Red Caps have pushed both Bready and Eglinton all the way thus far but will be frustrated not to have made either of those performances count.
It's a really difficult game to call this one and literally could go either way.
Ballyspallen v Donemana
Coleraine v Brigade
Eglinton v Bready
Glendermott v Strabane