Ian Callender (Belfast Telegraph)
CIYMS, who won a clean sweep of trophies in the NCU last season, will open their defence of the Lagan Valley Steels T20 Cup with an away game against newly promoted Woodvale.
This year’s competition - with the winners qualifying for the National T20 Cup - will be a straight knock-out tournament with the quarter-finals being played on Sunday July 26.
The semi-finals and final will follow at two-weekly intervals, allowing for a reserve date the following Sunday, if rain intervenes.
(T20 winners CIYMS)
The Premier League and Challenge Cup will not be played for this year, with the league being replaced by a 20-over League Cup competition, sponsored by Robinson Services.
The games will be played on seven successive Saturdays – with no rearrangements – but Ireland squad members will miss the first three rounds – and the T20 Cup quarter-finals – because they will be on international duty in England ahead of three one-day internationals in Southamption.
The squad leave on the season's opening day, July 18.
That’s particularly bad news for North Down as new signing Paul Stirling misses their T20 quarter-final against Instonians as well as the big League Cup game against Waringstown, plus Carrickfergus and Instonians in the same competition.
In the League Cup, because the eight teams are playing each other only once, four teams – CIYMS, Instonians, Lisburn and CSN will have four home games but the other four will have only three.
The full T20 Cup quarter-final draw is:
(1) Waringstown v CSN, (2) North Down v Instonians, (3) Woodvale v CIYMS (4) Carrickfergus v Lisburn. Semi-finals (Aug 9): 1 v 2 and 3 v 4. Final Aug 23.
Robinson Services League Cup fixtures
September 5: Semi-finals September 12: Final
The default time for all matches is 2pm but clubs can agree any start time up to 5pm.