It was a case of wait and see in all the Gallagher Challenge Cup quarter-finals as early morning rain swept across the province and caused reductions to the overs in all the ties.

Instonians, winless in the League were the surprise winners of the round, seeing off a chase by the home side by 37 runs.
Surprising not so much because of their league position but from the fact that they were without captain Andrew White and Shane Getkate, both on duty with Ireland Wolves.

Captain for the day Nikolai Smith led the way with 94 while Murray Commins played the kind of innings that has eluded him so far this season with a masterful 84, in a partnership of 152 which left Waringstown set a target of 243 in 43 overs.

Step up Josh Manley who has made an immediate impact since his recent arrival.
With pace and movement away from the bat he removed Adam Dennison in the first over and with a helpless James Hall watching from the other end bowled McCollum and Nelson in identical fashion as both were neither forward nor back as the bails were removed.

As if that wasn’t enough his next ball found the in form Greg Thompson’s pads and the home side were 51-4 with the tall South African having all four.

James Hall top scored with 67 and with Marcus McClean (29), Kyle McCallan (27) and a lusty 21 from James Mitchell the home side were not out of the game but wickets fell as the asking rate got to sevens and in the end 37 runs was a more than comfortable margin of victory for the visitors.

Wins also for Premier sides against lower league opposition, Muckamore by 72 runs over local rivals Templepatrick and CSNI denying Cregagh’s home advantage to win by 6 wickets.

At Moylena the home side got to 171 thanks to Shane Henderson and Khartik Rajevelu who took the score from a precarious 110-6.
With captain Neil Gill’s opening burst earning him figures of 5-30 the Templepatrick chase never got going Aditya Adey claiming the vital wicket of Ari Smith.

CSNI chased down a similar score at Cregagh where Marc Ellison (63) and Paddy Beverland (40) ensured the visitors were home with five overs to spare.

The final game was an all Premier clash CIYMS, without Mark Adair and Carrick without Ryan Eagleson which saw a Chris Dougherty cancel out contributions from Carrick’s South African duo, Snyman and Van Der Walt.
CI skipper added 66 as the home side eased past Carrick’s 219 with two overs to spare.

So the semis will feature Muckamore and Instonians, the two bottom sides from the Premier league, which only goes to prove that in the Cup anything can happen and sometimes actually does.

Gallagher Challenge Cup - Quarter-final Results:

Waringstown lost to Instonians by 37 runs. 
The Lawn, 29 June.
Instonians 242-8 (43.0 overs, Nikolai Smith 94, M Commins 84, Haseeb Azam 2-31, G Kidd 2-58)
Waringstown 205 (38.3 overs, J Hall 67, M McClean 29, K McCallan 27, J Manley 4-37, M Humphreys 2-5, J Hunter 2-23, B Rose 2-45)

Muckamore beat Templepatrick by 72 runs.
 Moylena, 29 July.
Muckamore 171-8 (47.0 overs, S Henderson 31, P Karthik 26, Aditya Adey 25 , M Stewart 4-37)
Templepatrick 99 (27.1 overs, N Gill 5-30, P Karthik 3-21)

Cregagh lost to CSNI by 6 wickets.
 Gibson Park, 29 June.
Cregagh 173-8 (43.0 overs, M Johnston 45, J Moore 44, J Hunter 38 , B Adair 4-32, G McCarter 2-33)
CSNI 175-4 (37.5 overs, M Ellison 63, P Beverland 40, A Johnston 27 , A McCormick 2-29)

CIYMS beat Carrickfergus by 7 wickets. 
Belmont, 29 June.
Carrickfergus 219-6 (40.0 overs, J Snyman 61, CJ van der Walt 45, A Coulter 2-32 )
CIYMS 220-3 (38.0 overs, C Dougherty 111*, N Jones 66, M McCord 2-29)