A record Northern Knights partnership of 156 in 17 overs between Ben Calitz and Ruhan Pretorius was the catalyst for a convincing 81-run (DLS) win over Munster Reds in a rain-affected Interprovincial Cup clash at Stormont.

Sam Topping (28) and James McCollum (18) had made a steady start after a rain delay initially meant a 43-overs contest.

However, wickets for Liam McCarthy, Mike Frost, and Brandon Kruger (3-39) had the hosts in a little trouble at 72 for 4 in the 20th over.

That brought together Calitz – a former Canadian U19 international – and Ruhan Pretorius who totally transformed the game with their destructive hitting.

Ben Calitz scored 104 not out.

20 year-old left-hander Calitz became the fourth Knights player to make a hundred in the competition – joining Mark Adair, Neil Rock and Luke Georgeson – as he hit 7 fours and 7 sixes in his 85-ball unbeaten 104.

Pretorius also cleared the ropes seven times as well as hitting eight fours, and looked destined also to reach three figures but perished on 91 from just 53 balls.

A final total of 279 for 7 in 43 overs looked challenging and even more so when Matthew Foster struck twice early in the reply.

Further showers meant a target of 220 in just 27 overs, with Munster never threatening to do so.

There was some entertainment for the handful of brave souls who stuck it out to the end, with Liam McCarthy thumping 7 fours and 2 sixes in an 18-ball 46.

It was too little, too late, though as Munster were 138 all out – four wickets for left-arm spinner Cian Robertson, plus two apiece for Foster and Tyron Koen.

A word of praise for Munster’s Harry Dyer – who showed great sportsmanship in walking off after a fine edge behind. The Spirit of Cricket alive and well at Stormont.

There’s action next week in the series with all sides playing – Munster Reds are at home – well, Oakhill – to North West Warriors, while the Northern Knights entertain Leinster Lightning, once again at Stormont. The T20 Trophy matches are on Tuesday afternoon, while the 50-overs cup games are on Wednesday.