After the disappointment of the opening friendly against Waringstown on Sunday falling foul of the heavy rain during the week Muckamore will attempt to get in some game time this weekend when they travel to the North West on Saturday to play Glendermott starting at 1pm. This friendly will give the Muckamore coach Bobby Rao the first opportunity to see some of his new charges in action on the field. Bobby has been working hard with the team over the last couple of months on individual skills and now it’s about fine tuning the roles within the team. This weekend will give an opportunity to some of the squad members to push for a place in the opening league game on Saturday 27th when Muckamore host reigning Premier League champions CIYMS. But skipper Neil Gill, wicketkeeper Davy Millar and swing bowler Richard Keates are all at a stag party in Spain while new recruit Marcus O’Riordan will be in Bath playing for Ireland Academy against Gloucester Seconds and the England Development squad, opening bowler Pavan Karthik is on a pre season break in South Africa and Fahad Iqbal the club Pro is still playing State cricket in Pakistan. So with six guys unavailable it gives an opportunity for fringe players to push for a place and for others to get time at the crease. Sam Gordon is this season’s vice captain and he will lead the side in Neil’s absence. Sam like Aditya Adey has just returned from playing during our winter in Australia. It’s also a first chance for new signing Francis Collins to have a game since having major knee surgery in the winter. Francis played for Irish Schools and if he can get back to full fitness he could be a key player in the Muckamore team for years to come. Only 21 years of age like Sam and Aditya, they and 17 year old Luke Allen can be the backbone of the local side’s top order for the next ten to fifteen years. Away from the Firsts the other six adult teams are getting prepared for the season ahead. Benji Cathcart this season’s Seconds skipper took a Muckamore select to play Maghera on Saturday in probably the first game played in Ireland this year. Bowling first they restricted the Mid Ulster side to 120 runs in the 30 overs. Star performer with the ball was Bluebelles Joanne Davis who claimed four wickets supported by David Steen who ended up with five victims. In a successful chase Davy Miller top scored with 60 to lead the team to a six wicket win. All team’s nets have now started at the club on Tuesday and Thursday evenings.
ANYONE FOR CRICKET .
Muckamore again are asking “ have you played cricket in the past and would like to get started again ?” or never played but would like to give it a go . Simply turn up at pre season nets this week and talk to one of the team captains. It doesn’t matter what standard you played at, what age you are or if you are male or female as the biggest club in Ulster cricket Muckamore have a Level for you. We are particularly keen to get more female playing members to build on last season’s Premier League success and hopefully introduce a second Ladies team and have a girls under 15 side. If you want to talk to someone before turning up then give First team manager and Sixth team captain Ivan McCombe a call on 07553388190. Ivan says “ we are a friendly, welcoming club who look to play competitively at all levels while recognising the social side and how friendships are built through cricket, so come along and give us a try . As well as players we have many openings for scorers, umpires, video analysis, camera work, supporting the ground staff or just associate membership and become a team supporter. We would really like to get someone technical who could live stream the Firsts games and also give video analysis to the coach’.