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NCU Senior League 2017
Topping on the move
Civil Service North are believed to have clinched the signing of Ireland under-19 international Morgan Topping from Waringstown.
NCU release draft fixtures for 2018
The Premier League fixture list for 2018 has been released with champions Waringstown starting their defence with a home tie against Carrickfergus at The Lawn.
Doak to coach Lisburn
Neil Doak has been appointed the new head coach at Lisburn Cricket Club.
Andy White to skipper Instonians,
Andrew White will be the new skipper of Instonians in 2018, replacing Nikolai Smith for the Shaws Bridge side.
Dungannon withdraw from NCU
Dungannon have become the latest casualty of local cricket after they informed the NCU they won't be playing competitive cricket in 2018.
Carrick confirm McCord signing
Matthew McCord, the Cliftonville captain, is moving to Middle Road after attracting interest from a number of top flight clubs.
McCord on the move
Matthew McCord has spoken to the News Letter about his decision to switch from Cliftonville to Carrickfergus.
NCU Review 12: Cliftonville
It was a difficult season for Cliftonville who suffered relegation from Section One along with Academy.
NCU Review 11: Holywood
After a fast start that had Holywood at or near the top of Section 1 until mid summer, the months of June and July saw a run of losses that required a strong finish to the season to finish in outright 4th place.
NCU Review 10: Lurgan
It was a tough season for Lurgan but they managed to hold on to Section One status with a 7th placed finish. The club's Ladies enjoyed double success winning the cup and the league in emphatic fashion.
NCU Review 9: Armagh
A memorable 2017 season for Armagh CC swung from early despair when the NCU ruled that overseas player Indrajeet Kamtekar was not eligible to play despite their earlier assurances to elation when the city side sealed their first return to the top flight since 1957.
NCU Review 8: CSNI
It was a tough season all around for CSNI as they finished just above the relegation zone in the Premier League and never threatened in the cups.
NCU Review 7: Carrickfergus
It was all in all a satisfactory campaign for Carrickfergus who consolidated their top flight position with a fourth place standing after a brilliant 2016 saw them earn the runner-up slot.
NCU Review 6: North Down
2017 saw North Down bounce back and maintain a title challenge right into the final weeks of the campaign.
NCU Review 5: Lisburn
End of a great run in top flight cricket saw Lisburn being relegated for the first time in nearly 30 years.
NCU Review 4: CIYMS
It was a very good season for the Belmont side but it could, and perhaps should have been a great one.
NCU Review 3: Muckamore
Premier League survival was the prime objective for the Moylena club so it was very much a case of mission accomplished.
NCU Review 2: Instonians
The 2017 season wasn't a memorable one for Instonians as they flirted with a relegation battle as they were badly affected by injuries.
NCU Review 1: Waringstown
Four trophies in the Waringstown cabinet capped a memorable season at The Lawn.
Cregagh claim Section 2 title
Cregagh claimed the title in style with a 9 wicket win over Saintfield and pipping Laurelvale to the crown on Nett Run Rate.
Qualifying NCU stats for annual awards
Leading stats for players in the Premier League and Challenge Cup only.
Bangor enjoy their day in the sun
Bangor retained their place in Section 1 with a 63 run win that sees today's opponents Cliftonville relegated.
While in Section 2 the race to be Champions goes on as Laurelvale win at Templepatrick.
McGillivray back at CIYMS in 2018
CIYMS have conformed that South African professional Matt McGillivray will be back at the club for the 2018 season.
Hat-trick for Cregagh
A trio of Cregagh cricketers - including a father and son partnership received Gardiner Brothers NCU awards.
Only one space left in the Section 1 lifeboat
Derriaghy pull themselves to safety with a win over Downpatrick.
Waringstown champions
WARINGSTOWN are the Gardiner Bros Premier League champions without having to play their last game of the season.
Waringstown keen to capture league on the field
LISBURN are determined to host their final Gardiner Bros Premier League game for at least two years tomorrow but they know they are in the lap of the weather gods.
NCU Saturday roundup
The fight for survival goes on as the NCU season trickles to a close
One last hurrah for Waringstown
Waringstown have one final hurrah as they complete what has been a truly remarkable season.
Run rate to decide Section Two?
THE Gardiner Bros Section Two title race could be decided on run-rate after Cregagh's defeat on Sunday, in a five-over match against Larne.
Waringstown set to lift title
THERE should be little doubt that Waringstown will be named team of the season when the annual awards are handed out at the end of the year and their crowning glory should come tomorrow at Wallace Park.
Armagh back in the big time
TOP flight cricket returns to The Mall next season for the first time in 61 years after Armagh sealed promotion from Section One with victory over Downpatrick at the weekend.
Weekend round up
Lisburn relegated and Armagh promoted to the Premier League.
North Down finish third
North Down failed in their bid to join Waringstown and CIYMS at the top of the Gardiner Bros Premier League table after they lost their final match to Instonians.
Fine Fayre on offer at The Green
There was great entertainment for the fans as Instonians chased down a big North Down total to win by 6 wickets.
NCU Saturday roundup
Armagh will replace Lisburn. Promotions confirmed while other relegations stay on hold.
R-day for Lisburn?
Unless they defeat Instonians at Wallace Park (11am) they will be relegated to Section One, even before their last game, which is likely to be the title decider against Waringstown next Saturday.
Lisburn face up to the inevitable
At the same time as Waringstown challenge for the Irish Senior Cup at Wallace Park perhaps Lisburn will be confirmed as the team to be relegated from the Premier League if they lose against Instonians.
Thriller at Comber
The last time I witnessed 45 minutes of mayhem like I saw on Saturday at Comber Liverpool finished up winning the Champions League!
CIYMS spoil the party
THE Gardiner Bros Premier League trophy was at The Lawn yesterday, ready to be presented to Waringstown if they won their final home match of the season. But CIYMS spoilt the party.
CIYMS do half the job
CIYMS gained the win over Waringstown but didn't do enough to overturn the Villagers NRR advantage.
Waringstown edge past Lisburn
It was not the expected stroll for Waringstown either against basement side Lisburn at The Lawn. Despite chasing just 139 for victory it needed an unbeaten eighth wicket stand of 24 between Kyle McCallan and Gary Kidd to see them home.
Saturday's Premier roundup
Waringstown get the job done while CI run into trouble at North Down.
Jones not ruling out CIYMS
If we finish with two wins then it has been a good season, we may still lose on NRR but there is no point dwelling on that, perhaps more telling is that we lost twice to Muckamore and to CSNI.
Waringstown taking nothing for granted
WARINGSTOWN will be taking nothing for granted when they face Lisburn tomorrow but if they complete their expected victory, the players will rush off to hear the result from Comber.
Instonians end horror run
Instonians finally found the answer, 50 days after their last win a 64 run unbeaten 7th wicket partnership eased the tension and took them past the 152 posted by CSNI.
Getkate returns to haunt CSNI
Shane Getkate returned to Stormont for the first time since his controversial departure at the start of the season to play the match-winning innings as Instonians inched towards safety in the relegation battle.
NCU Saturday roundup
Review of Saturday's results in the Premier League and Section One
Reversal of fortune
Such has been the reversal in fortunes for both this year, it is the current league champions struggling at the bottom with North Down completely revitalised under coach Craig Yelverton and professional Ruhan Pretorius.
North Down can lay down marker
North Down can lay down the marker for those who want to win the Gardiner Bros Premier League this weekend with back to back victories – but it could also go pear-shape if they lose their final two away games.
Marc Ellison returns to CSNI
Former Club professional Marc Ellison has rejoined CSNI following his return to Northern Ireland.
Relief for Instonians as Lisburn and CSN lose
INSTONIANS were the most relieved team in the Gardiner Bros Premier League at the weekend as both Lisburn and Civil Service North failed to take advantage of their idleness.
NCU Premier League round-up
Wins for Waringstown, North Down and CIYMS mean it as you were both at the top and bottom of the table.
Section one review
Armagh widen the gap to 8 points with a 3 run win over rivals Woodvale.
Title in Waringstown grasp
Whilst it may be a little premature to be calling the Premier League title as good as over, now it’s very much in Waringstown hands as we enter the final month.
Instonians look to pick up the pieces
INSTONIANS hope to pick up the pieces and get their season back on track when the defending champions host Carrickfergus in the pick of the Gardiner Bros Premier League action.
Waringstown in pole position
Waringstown’s hopes of opening an eight-point lead at the head of the Gardiner Brothers Premier League, ultimately ended in frustration at a soggy Wallace Park.
Waringstown go clear as North Down go under at Carrick
Wins for Waringstown, Muckamore and Carrickfergus in a rain-affected Premier League programme.
Premier League Weekend Preview
A look at Saturday and Sunday's Premier League programme.
Instonians in a tailspin
Time for a reality check – since winning the semi-final of the Arthur J Gallagher Challenge Cup Instonians have gone into a tailspin losing four Premier League games on the bounce.
Justice for Waringstown
WARINGSTOWN claimed justice was done when James Mitchell hit the final ball of the match for four to give them victory over Instonians and a huge four points in their pursuit of the Premier League title.
Premier League round-up
Waringstown and North Down top the table while Lisburn find themselves alone at the bottom.
Premier League enters critical phase
Stand out fixture is Instonians v Waringstown at Shaw’s Bridge, but any of the other four games this weekend has equal merit.
Injury blow for Instonians
Shane Getkate is almost certainly out of next weekend’s AJG Challenge Cup final after confirmation that he has broken the little finger on his left hand.
Jeff has it all covered
AS 60th birthday parties go, Jeff Maguire’s will take some beating. The Dundrum chairman decided to have a cricket match between club members to raise money to buy new covers for the scenic ground in Co Down.
Woodvale favourites to claim Section One title
With the Premier League taking a weekend off it was time to look at what’s going on in Gardiner Brothers Section One.
Lisburn throw lifejackets overboard
Lisburn having done so much last weekend to give themselves the chance of survival in the premier league appeared to throw the life jackets overboard in this performance against CSNI.
Instonians fail to complete run chase at Belmont
Instonians lost at CIYMS who moved eight points clear of their opponents in a three-way tie at the top.
Lisburn and Muckamore look to put cup agony behind them
Lisburn take on CSNI, while Muckamore host Carrickfergus.
Doak and Kidd blow title race wide open
Gary Kidd must have thought he had the stage to himself as the left-arm spinner basked in the glory of his best-ever figures in club cricket.
Carrick ease relegation fears
Easy win takes the pressure off Carrickfergus after they beat CSNI.
Clash of the Titans
It’s “Clash of the Titans” at The Lawn in the Premier League. Games between Waringstown and North Down are always eagerly anticipated, but it’s been some time since one as significant as this.
Instonians bounce back
Instonians bounced back from their defeat to Gardiner Bros Premier League leaders North Down on Saturday to beat Carrickfergus by three wickets in yesterday’s only game.
North Down top of the pile
What a difference a year makes; North Down firmly laid down their title credentials at Comber with a convincing 6 wicket victory over Instonians.
Double woe for Carrickfergus
In theory, they are too good to be there but the facts are that after a promising start to the campaign they have now lost 8 games in a row.
Hundred for Hall as Waringstown win
As far as weekend batting exploits go, James Hall of Waringstown might have thought he had stolen the headlines with his exquisite century at Carrickfergus.
Instonians climb above Carrickfergus
A three wicket win away to Carrickfergus moved Instonians four points clear of today's opponents and into fourth place in the league table.
Premier League round-up
Top three all win as bottom of the table Lisburn are blown away by CIYMS for only 64.
Double headers beckon for Instonians
Two teams face massive weekends as the Gardiner Brothers Premier League takes centre stage. For Carrickfergus and Instonians who meet on Sunday it is almost polar opposites.
Gill looking for Muckamore to consolidate
Perhaps the surprise package in local cricket this season is Muckamore.
NCU Saturday's League round-up
Only five League games played due to Challenge and Junior Cup commitments.
North Down still top the table
North Down will go into their game against defending champions Instonians in two weeks’ time still top of the Premier League after maintaining their four points lead.
Pretorius brilliance seals North Down win
It’s often said that catches win matches, but occasionally so do moments of individual brilliance which you can only admire and applaud.
Dennison scores maiden ton for Waringstown
Adam Dennison scored his first century for Waringstown as the Villagers crushed Civil Service North by 115 runs for their first home Premier League win of the season.
NCU Saturday's League round-up
Rain cuts the programme but the top two win again.
Woodvale keep winning
First stop on Saturday was Ballygomartin Road where in Section One Woodvale made it four out of four with a 5 wicket win against Armagh.
Waringstown hold nerve to beat Muckamore
Important win for Waringstown as they get their title bid back on track.
Deja vu at Moylena
History repeated itself at Moylena when, for the second time in two weeks, a game against Waringstown was won and lost by a run out off the fourth ball of the last over.
Academy win despite English century
In Section One Mark English's 102 wasn't enough to prevent Bangor from slipping to a 63 run loss against Academy, for whom Sam Beard followed up his 79 with 4 for 26.
Gill heroics in vain as Muckamore slip proves costly
Neil Gill's heroics weren't enough to pull off a dramatic win for Muckamore as Waringstown prevailed by just two runs in another pulsating epic contest which are becoming a regular feature of the Premier League in 2017.
Carrick fired up for battle of the big guns
Carrickfergus will be desperate to prove that last week's defeat by North Down was only a blip when last year's top two meet in the Premier League.
Jones happy with CIYMS progress
Ahead of the clash with his former side CSNI, CIYMS captain Nigel Jones is reasonably happy with his lot right now.
North Down continue to confound critics
This weekend is the first weekend we have been at full strength, Neil Russell is available and it is great to have Carl Robinson bowling. So, yes perhaps we have managed to keep the critics quiet so far.
CIYMS win battle of Belmont
CIYMS crawled across the line winning by one wicket with two balls to spare; it was almost like two heavyweights hanging on in the 12th round of a championship decider.
Premier League weekend round up
It was a good weekend for several NCU Knights cricketers.
Five-way tie at top of Premier League
IT is a five-way tie at the top of the NCU Premier League after three rounds of matches as Carrickfergus surrendered the last unbeaten record in tame fashion.
Saturday's action in brief
A Look back at the weekend action in the Premier and Section 1 Leagues
No walkovers in NCU league
Greg Thompson believes the only thing Waringstown's defeat by Muckamore last Saturday in the AJG Challenge Cup proves is that every team in the Premier League can beat anyone else on the day.
Crucial weekend for Instonians and Waringstown
It is a crucial weekend for both Instonians and Waringstown and given they form the backbone of the NCU Knights team playing in Cork.
Berry looking for full performance from Lisburn
Some cracking ties down for decision in the Premier League.
Cowden relinquishes CSNI captaincy
Civil Service North captain Andrew Cowden has stepped down from the role, being replaced by Graeme McCarter at the helm.
Inst show title winning class
It’s stretching things to declare that the outcome of a match on the third weekend of the season could ultimately decide a league title, but Instonians’ victory over Waringstown on Saturday may yet be hugely significant in the final analysis.
Instonians victorious at The Lawn
Champions Instonians emerged as 20 run winners in the clash of Premier League 'favourites'.
Muckamore stun CIYMS
Last weekend Muckamore seemed on the brink of marking their return to the premier league with victory against Carrickfergus, only to see it snatched away by Daniel Poulton’s savagery in hitting 80 not out.
North Down and Carrick win impressively
North Down delivered a performance of much promise scoring 307 and once again professional Ruhan Pretorius lead the way. Having passed 50 in both his previous knocks this time he went on to nail his first century of the season.
Meanwhile on the home front
Ian Callender reviews the local action over the weekend.
Section One round up
Tight at the top and tight at the bottom after two rounds of matches.
Premier League round up
Carrickfergus top the pile after runfest versus Lisburn while Muckamore claim win against CIYMS and North Down overcome CSNI.
Gill targets CIYMS win
The challenge now is to establish ourselves in the top section and we know CI have a lot of quality in their line-up. I thought we acquitted ourselves well last weekend.
Reduced programme in the NCU
THERE are only three games in the NCU Premier League because of this weekend’s one-day internationals in England.
Double hundreds in the NCU
Ryan Smyth's 249 not out is the highest innings ever in the NCU region - beating Nick Larkin's 247* for the Knights and Obus Pienaar's 244 for Waringstown.
Smyth steals the limelight on NCU opening day
Ryan Smyth, the young Downpatrick batsman, was a comparitive unknown before Saturday. But the former Saintfield player should be on the radar of most cricket observers now after breaking the record for the highest individual score made by a batsman in NCU senior cricket.
Go Slow North Down lose to Waringstown
NORTH Down’s hopes of a surprise victory over NCU Premier League favourites Waringstown were dashed by the umpires on Saturday as they intervened to halt the match and hand the visitors 24 penalty runs.
Premiership round-up
Carrickfergus the only Home winners on the opening day of the Premier season.
Carrickfergus sneak home
Carrickfergus 'Get out of Jail' as Eagleson and Poulton see them home against Muckamore.
Matt finish from new CIYMS star McGillivray
CIYMS thought they were getting a fast bowler from South Africa as their new professional, but he won his side their first match yesterday with the bat.
NCU ins and outs
Here is the full rundown of all you need to know about the 2017 NCU Premier League, including who has moved where, the new professionals and the men to watch out for.
Smith backing Instonians young guns to fire
Instonians captain Nikolai Smith expects his side to be challenging for Premier League honours again this year, although he admits he will be relying on the younger players at Shaw's Bridge.
Derriaghy favourites to bounce back
Derriaghy start the NCU Section One season as strong favourites to bounce straight back to the top flight.
Who will win the NCU title?
INSTONIANS, the runaway winners of last season’s NCU Premier League, will defend their title this season without an overseas professional.
NCU Preview 12: Derriaghy
Following the disappointment of relegation from the Premier league after just 1 season Derriaghy are determined to bounce straight back again.
NCU Preview 11: Muckamore
Neil Gill is back at the helm for the progressive Moylena side as they embark again on a journey in the top echelons of NCU cricket.
NCU Preview 10: Instonians
It's as you were for the defending champions albeit without an overseas player at this stage.
NCU Preview 9: Bangor
Bangor enjoyed mid-table safety in 2016 but the jury's out on how 2017 will develop.
NCU Preview 8: Waringstown
Waringstown will have been disappointed by 2016 when they looked like winning everything but suffered injuries, lost momentum and faltered in the final stages.
NCU Preview 7: Donaghcloney Mill
A new season, a new venture, as the merger of Donaghcloney and Millpark sees Donaghcloney Mill take the field.
NCU Preview 6: Cliftonville
Cliftonville will once again have a good blend of youth and experience, and look forward to the challenges ahead this season.
NCU Preview 5: Holywood
It promises to be an exciting campaign at SeaPark with the club's promising youth structures continuing to bear fruit.
NCU Preview 4: Lisburn
It could be a year of struggle for Lisburn but they've proved their resilience in the past and will be tough to beat especially at home in 2017.
NCU Preview 3: North Down
After a hugely disappointing campaign last time around some significant changes both on and off the field have brought renewed optimism at The Green.
NCU Preview 2: Carrickfergus
The 2016 season was an excellent one for Carrickfergus as the club achieved their highest placed finish in the top flight of NCU cricket.
NCU Preview 1: CIYMS
The Belmont club look to have a very strong squad at their disposal and will be expected to challenge for major honours.
Shaheen Khan has unfinished business at Waringstown
South African all-rounder Shaheen Khan says he has unfinished business in the NCU after signing to rejoin Waringstown for the 2017 season.