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This weeks review First week of August


Despite heavy overnight rain Muckamore Seconds travelled to Lisburn on

Saturday to play North Down Seconds in their Junior Cup Final more in hope

than expectation that it would be played. The 11am start time came and went as

the rain continued to fall but it eventually stopped to allow the mopping up to

proceed to get the pitch ready to play on. Good work by the ground staff finally

allowed the umpires to get the game underway at 2.15 pm but the delay meant

that the 50 over game had been reduced to 36 overs per team. With the

uncertain weather conditions and the dreaded Duckworth Lewis system likely to

come in to play, the advantage seeming always to go to the team chasing a

score, Muckamore Captain Leslie Allen lost the toss and his team was asked to

bat first. Teenagers Luke Allen and Arnold Oduvelil were the opening batsmen

who faced North Down bowlers B Adams and F Keenan and in the first 7 overs

they comfortably scored 34 runs before rain forced a 15 minute stoppage. On

resumption bowler M Moreland replaced Keenan and off only his second

delivery he trapped Oduvelil lbw to dismiss him for 14 runs. Sunson

Stephenson joined Allen and two more runs were added before a delivery from

Moreland came off Sunny’s bat to spin back, hit the wicket and knock off the

bails to send him back to the pavilion with just one run to his name. Richard

Keates was Allen’s new partner and they added 10 runs in the next 2 overs

before he became Moreland’s third victim when he was bowled out for only 7

runs. Now on 55 runs for 4 wickets Johnny Gordon was the next batsman and

he struggled to score 3 runs off 18 deliveries before he mistimed his shot to give

bowler T Carson a simple return catch to bring his innings to an end. David

Rainey then came to the wicket to join Allen but in the very next over Luke’s

stubborn innings ended on 26 runs when he edged a Moreland delivery into

wicketkeeper G Anderson’s hands. Shane Henderson followed to face four

deliveries from new bowler P Shields until he lobbed the fifth straight into

‘point’ fielder H Coulter’s hands to take his little duck back to the pavilion. The

Muckamore batting had collapsed from 34 runs for no wickets to 68 runs for 6

wickets in just 10 overs as Leslie Allen came to the wicket. Another brief

stoppage for rain saw bowler Keenan return to bowl Rainey with his first

delivery after he had scored 12 runs. Benji Cathcart was Leslie’s next partner

and they took the score to 85 runs into the 26 th over before he was caught by

‘point’ fielder Coulter off a Keenan delivery. Michael Wilson was the

penultimate batsman and with Leslie they took the score 97 runs until stepping

down the wicket he was hit on the pads and was dubiously given out lbw to a

Moreland delivery in the 28 th over to end his 3 run innings. David Steen was the

last man in and he faced two deliveries before Leslie was given out to another

doubtful lbw decision off a P Shields delivery when he had stepped well

forward to try and force the ball away for another run. This brought the very

disappointing 98 run Muckamore innings to an end. Best of the North Down

bowlers was the veteran Marty Moreland who took 5 wickets for 21 runs, in a

performance that the Muckamore batsmen just couldn’t handle and F Keenan

who took 2 wickets for 21 runs. I Arthur and H Coulter opened the batting for

North Down against Muckamore bowlers Shane Henderson and Michael

Wilson but after just 2 overs the rain again forced the players off the pitch.

When play resumed the unfair Duckworth Lewis calculation had reduced the

North Down target to only 74 runs in the next 22 overs. Although Muckamore’s

captain Leslie Allen used five of his bowlers they were unable to make a quick

breakthrough and the score progressed to 61 runs into the 11 th over before David

Steen had Arthur caught by ‘point’ fielder Michael Wilson to end his opening

partnership on 16 runs. The new batsman was S Scott but as he and his partner

Coulter eased towards their team’s victory the unfortunate Muckamore

wicketkeeper Benji Cathcart suffered a leg injury when diving for a ball and had

to be helped off the field. The versatile Captain Leslie Allen replaced him for

the last few overs and the 12 th man teenager Jude Keates came on as the suitable

replacement. The game continued and the batsmen easily scored the 13 runs

needed to clinch this very easy 9 wicket victory. Batsmen H Coulter finished

not out on 37 runs and S Scott finished on 12 runs not out. Best of the

Muckamore bowlers was David Steen who took one wicket for 9 runs. A very

disappointing result for the Muckamore boys who with a below par

performance were beaten by a better team on the day. This Wednesday evening

the hectic end of season rush continues when the Seconds travel to Belmont

play CIYMS Seconds in a 20/20 league game; on Saturday they are at home to

Carrickfergus Seconds and on Sunday they travel to Comber to play North

Down Seconds. Both the First team home games against Lisburn and

Waringstown were washed out at the weekend and the end of season pile up of

fixtures is further congested by the closed dates for the Interprovincial matches

this weekend. The next listed game for the Firsts is at Moylena against fellow

relegation threatened strugglers Instonians on Saturday 24 th August. All the

other Muckamore games were also cancelled at the weekend. The Fourths are

listed to play BISC Seconds at home this Saturday. The Fifths are scheduled to

play away to CIYMS Fourths on Saturday and at home to Larne Seconds on

Sunday. The Sixths home game against Belfast Superkings Seconds on

Saturday will have to be played elsewhere or postponed.

The Muckamore Bluebelles travelled to Stormont on Sunday to play against

CSNI Ladies in the final of the Gallagher Premier Challenge Cup. The

Bluebelles Captain Helen Breet won the toss and asking CSNI to bat first they

scored 103 runs for the loss of 6 wickets in their allocated 20 overs Their top

scorers were S Thomas who scored 22 runs and A Leckey who scored 19 runs.

Best of the Bluebelles bowlers were Zoe Baysting who took 2 wickets for 12

runs and Joanne Davis who took 2 wickets for 25 runs. The Bluebelles batters

kept up with the run chase and needing ten runs to win off the very last over

they fell just 3 runs short of victory. Their top scorers were Amy Caulfield with

44 runs and Joanne Davis with 17 runs. Best of the CSNI bowlers were E Scott

who took 2 wickets for 15 runs and A Leckey who took 2 wickets for 22 runs. A

very disappointing defeat and in a close finish such as the question ‘if only’ is

always asked. Lessons should be learned to look for and push for that second

run along with the reduction of bowling extras which in the end would have

made such a difference to the result.

Last Wednesday evening, the Muckamore U13A team travelled to Shaw's

Bridge to play Instonians U13A in the semi final of their League. Instonians

won the toss and elected to bat. Whilst the Instonians score turned over very

quickly in the early overs, Muckamore did take 2 wickets in quick succession,

with James Laverty trapping one of the openers LBW in his first over, and Jude

Keates smashing the stumps of the other opener with a superb yorker, leaving

Instonians on 26 for 2 after 3 overs. That brought Tom Crothers and Amy

Hunter to the crease. They steadied the Instonians innings, scoring 36 and 23

respectively, before losing their wickets to the bowling of Callum Stewart and

Ethan Wilson, with the score now on 107. But it was the innings of Ben

McCausland that hurt Muckamore the most, and whilst Sam Magee did bowl 2

of Ben's batting partners out, Ben finished on 53 not out leaving Instonians

finishing on 170 for 6 off their allocated 20 overs.  The Muckamore openers,

Sam Magee and Callum Stewart, were well prepared for what they needed to

do, and it was only a freaky high bounce that led to Sam getting caught behind

with the Muckamore score on 4. Callum was then partnered by Jude Keates and

together they effortlessly took the score to 45 in the seventh over before Jude

was stumped with his score on 15. Muckamore continued to score steadily but

with light fading fast the decision was taken to call time on the game, with the

Muckamore score on 81 for 6 off 15 overs. This meant the game was decided on

run rate, Instonians 7.5, Muckamore 5.4, meaning Instonians won the game and

progressed to the final. This game concluded the U13s season. This is another

fantastic young team that has loads of cricketing talent, talent that our Club

should be highly proud of. And lastly, a special mention must go to a person

who is always prepared to go the extra mile. Sarah Keates has assisted the youth

coaches with scoring, preparing the teams and travel arrangements to many

U11, U13 and U15 games - not just this year - but in the last 5 years. Without

her support the youth coaches would have struggled. Sarah ("Keatoe"),

everything you've done hasn't gone unnoticed and has been greatly appreciated.

For that, the youth players and coaches want to say a massive......THANK


Last Thursday evening the Muckamore U11A team hosted Waringstown in the

semi final of the U11 League Premier Division. Waringstown won the toss and

elected to bat and they got off to a slow start with Muckamore’s opening

bowlers Luka Bates and Connor McVicker conceding only 12 runs in 8 overs,

with just 6 runs scored off the bat. Their team mates supported them superbly in

the field making runs difficult to come by, indeed, the first two wickets came

from run outs, both the result of good fielding from Connor McVicker and Alfie

Bingham. Muckamore had restrained Waringstown to 26 runs from 12

overs. Waringstown’s Robbie McCallum and Abby Harrison were now at the

wicket and together they built a partnership of 19 runs and were only separated

by Alfie Bingham who took centre stage with the ball to claim the wicket of

Robbie who made 18 runs. Abby batted to the end of the innings making 17

runs not out, and the Waringstown innings closed on 74 runs for the loss of 3

wickets from their allocated 20 overs. Special mention to Muckamore’s 9 year

old Shauryaman Bisht whose boundary fielding, diving and putting his body on

the line, contributed greatly to restrict Waringstown in their quest for vital runs.

Muckamore openers James Murray and Marko Bates steadily built an opening

partnership of 20 runs in 5 overs against an accurate bowling attack of Robbie

McCallum and Alex McMeekin with the former bowling Marko to claim their

first wicket. Good running between the wickets ensured a decent Muckamore

start, but unfortunately James was caught soon after and now Luka Bates and

Connor McVicker were at the crease. Luka hit two boundaries but was then

bowled whilst going for another big hit on the leg side. With the score at 34

runs for 3 wickets and Waringstown in buoyant mood sensing victory Connor

McVicker and his new partner Jayden Irwin set about the task of rebuilding the

Muckamore innings. Both played with great maturity under severe pressure.

Connor struck four boundaries in a well made 24 runs not out and Jayden hit

one boundary in his 13 runs not out. The highlight for the coaching team was

the 15 singles taken, therefore constantly rotating the strike and not allowing the

Waringstown bowlers to get into any rhythm. Their superb partnership of 42

runs in 7 overs saw Muckamore home in the 16th over. A man of the match

performance from Connor McVicker and great support from Jayden Irwin

delighted their team mates and supporters who cheered and clapped them off the

pitch. Well played Waringstown who fought hard and in great competitive spirit

to keep the game in the balance for a long period. This is a great achievement

for this Under 11 Muckamore youth team to reach a final. Congratulations to all

the squad on their contribution and dedication in winning five of their six

matches to book their place in this showpiece occasion which will be played at

Moylena against Instonians on Monday 26th August.

The Midweek B team travelled to Uprichard Park last Wednesday evening to

play Bangor in their last match of the season seeking a win to draw level with

their opponents at the top of the table. In dull damp conditions Muckamore

batted first and were all out for 105 runs. Their top batsmen were K Bist who

scored 24 runs and J Jose who scored 21 runs. Best of the Bangor bowlers were

A Gowdy who took 4 wickets for 17 runs and J McKeown who took 2 wickets

for 24 runs. Bangor replied to pass the Muckamore total with ease to win the

game by 9 wickets to beat their nearest rivals and clinch the league title for the

2019 season. Their top batsmen were M Hutchinson who retired on 31 runs and

P McMullan who retired on 30 runs. Best of the Muckamore bowlers was Sanu

John who took one wicket for 17 runs. The bad weather meant that the

Midweek A team’s last match against Woodvale couldn’t be played.

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