The NCU U-13ís [sponsored by PwC] continued their four match series against Leinster U-13ís with the 3rd match at Ring Commons CC on Thursday.

Another sunny day greeted the players at Ring Commons and the NCU won the toss and elected to bat first. The NCU changed their opening pair and George Palmer and Michael Hollway opened the innings and put on 15 in 6 overs before Hollway was caught behind off the bowling of Aiden Muller.

This was reduced to 30 for 3 after 11 as the Leinster opening pair of Muller and Reuben Wilson bowled tightly backed up with some good fielding. Palmer was joined at the crease by Harry Dyer and they set about re-building the NCU innings, after 23 overs the NCU had moved onto 80 and a solid base had been laid.

Palmer was out for well made 36 off 71 balls. Tom Crothers came in at number 6 and both he and Dyer started cautiously and moved the total onto 117 after 30 overs. In the next 7 overs Crothers and Dyer exhibited a fantastic display of powerful batting. Crothers especially showed his great strength with some very powerful shots off the front foot.

Dyer having started slowly picked up the pace once he reached his 50. Crothers was out in the 38th over with the total on 213, he made 70 off 46 balls hitting  seven 4ís and five 6ís. The partnership between Crothers and Dyer was 129.

Dyer fell in the 39th over having made a run a ball 87 with seven 4ís and three 6ís. The NCU innings closed on 230 for 6 in their 40 overs.

In reply Leinster were reeling after 3 overs when they were 5 for 3 with Adam Leckey and Yuv Pahuja picking up a wicket each and Ben McCausland effecting yet another run out. Over the next 8 overs Macdara Cosgrove and Aaron Doyle set about the NCU bowling and they were changing the course of the match as they brought the score up to 85 in the 10th over. I

n the 11th over Dyer had Doyle caught by Palmer for a remarkable 60 runs off 27 balls including four 6ís. Sam Allister and 11 year old James West then bowled in tandem for the next 13 overs and the Leinster total was 135 for 8 after 24 overs.

West finished with figures of 4 for 31 off 8 overs and Allister whilst not taking a wicket finished with 0 for 42 off 8 overs. These two bowled really well and were backed up with some good fielding. Finn Lutton finished the innings with a couple of quick wickets. MacDara and Karpe with scores of 21 and 26 brought the Leinster total to 161 from 28.2 overs.

Another good advertisement of junior performance cricket being played in a great spirit with some real talent on show from both teams. They meet in the final match tomorrow at Stormont, starting at 12.