SURREY hosted Middlesex in the 2nd XI championship this week, pitting Stuart Thompson against his Ireland team-mates Paul Stirling and Andrew Balbirnie.
The game was played at Wimbledon, who have had some excellent Irish batsmen down the years including Jacko Heaslip, Michael Rea and Séamus Boylan.
Perhaps Surrey had a few Aussies on their team, as they were blown away on the first morning for just 59. Gurjit Sandhu was twice on a hat-trick as he single-handedly reduced Surrey to 47-6 and took 7-23 (all bowled or lbw) while Harry Podmore took 3-0.
Sandhu is a Londoner, and isn’t the GS Sandhu who played ODIs for Australia in the winter. Thompson batted No.6 in the midst of the carnage and his score of 13 off 16 balls (3 fours) was respectable in that context.
Middlesex took a huge first innings lead, with Stirling to the fore with 72 off 55 balls (1 six, 14 fours) and Balbirnie making a contrasting 15 off 51 balls. Both lost their wickets to Dan Douthwaite, who we wrote about last week for his 31-ball century alongside Sonny Cott.
The Irish pair were at the wicket when Thompson came on and they did him no favours. His first over went for seven (1 four), his second for 10 (2 fours) and Stirling hit three fours off the last three balls of his third and final over: 3-0-29-0.
With a deficit of 222 Surrey had little chance of saving the game but batted better to make 173, with Thompson out for 7 and two catches for Balbirnie.
Stuart Poynter and Barry McCarthy were in action for Durham against Yorkshire in the 50 over trophy and neither was required to bat as the top order made 331-1, including Scotland’s Callum McLeod making 104no.
McCarthy opened the bowling and returned 5-0-27-0, while Poynter held three catches as the spinners demolished Yorkshire for 208. In the three-day game Durham were dismissed for 252, most of which was made by Phil Mustard (144), although McCarthy (14*) was one of only three into double figures, although Poynter made 9. Yorkshire’s last seven wickets fell for 11 to end 127 all out (McCarthy 7-1-34-0, Poynter 3 catches) Durham were all out for 117 (Poynter 9, McCarthy 5) to set Yorkshire 223 to win.
McCarthy trapped the Yorkies’ promising batsman Will Rhodes and ended with 14-2-47-1 as Durham won by 40 runs. McCarthy was in the wickets again for Gateshead Fell in the North East Premier League, taking 5-65 off 13 overs as Whitburn were all out for 120. McCarthy earlier made 4 batting No.5. Poynter also turned out for Bolden in their win over Tudhoe, scoring 7.
On Saturday, Bobby Gamble was in the runs for Plumtree against Attenborough in the Notts Premier League, scoring 16 off 10 balls, but just bowled a single over. He was taken off after damaging his finger which caused him to miss Somerset 2nds’ game against Gloucestershire on Monday.
George Dockrell captained Somerset in that game which was badly hit by rain. Dockers took 1-34 off four overs as the county won. Gamble was back on Wednesday as Somerset collapsed to 141 all out against Derbyshire (Dockrell 12, Gamble dnb). Derbyshire passed the target for the loss of three wickets (Dockrell 3-0-13-0, Gamble 5-0-14-0).
Dockrell was also out for Taunton St Andrews against Frocester and took 2-69 off 10 overs and made 76 before he was bowled by former Gloucestershire bowler Paul Muchall.
Warwickshire played a 2nd XI friendly against Worcestershire, with Mark Adair bowling 9-1-69-1 in a 54 run defeat, and batting No.6 in the order he made 6. That was followed by a championship match in which Adair prised out the openers in his opening spell and ended with 4-58 off 16 overs. The game petered out into a draw without Adair needing to bat.
Jack Tector took a rest from scoring centuries for YMCA (Saturday’s was his third in nine innings) to play for Glamorganshire against Gloucestershire in a three-day friendly at Bristol CC.
Only 11 wickets fell in the first two days and two declarations were needed to keep the game moving. Tector made 32 as the Welsh club declared 50 behind. Set 347 to win, Glamorgan batted steadily with most batters contributing without anyone going on to make a big score. Tector was bowled by Titans’ slow left armer Graeme Von Buuren for 27.
Ireland U19 Sonny Cott was dismissed for 0 playing for Leatherhead against Sutton in the Surrey Premier League, while Andy Gorvin made 14 for Havant against the Hampshire Academy in the Southern Premier League.
And former Ireland U15 Cameron Shoebridge was in action for Scotland U17 against the Dutch in Utrecht. The former Malahide youth was out for 4 but took 7-0-29-1 as his adopted country won by 16 runs. Shoebridge also turned out against Ireland U17 this week.
He wasn’t selected for the two ODIs that Ireland won, but played in the T20 won by Scotland when he returned 4-0-44-2 with the wickets of Jamie Grassi and Andrew Austin.
Carlton CC in Edinburgh are now captained by ex-Ireland keeper Rory McCann, and with Shoebridge in the side had an excellent eight wicket win over leaders Grange at the weekend.