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1sts victory at home to Cregagh to start the 2010 Season

by Keith Martin on April 24th, 2010
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Jonny Stevenson claiming final figures of 3 for 26 from 10 overs

Donacloney entertained Cregagh in the opening fixture of the season on Saturday past, and enjoyed a great start to the season with an 8 wicket winning margin.

New skipper Keith Martin lost his first toss in charge, and his Cregagh counterpart deciding to take first use of the track. Keith urged his bowlers to keep a tight line and length, while he encouraged his fielders to be alert and provide able support, in a bid to ensure Cregagh would find runs hard to come by.

Jonny Stevenson and Davey Marshall shared the new ball duties and immediately found their stride. With no loose deliveries Cregagh struggled to score with any freedom, and by the 9th over with pressure building Stevenson eventually was rewarded as skipper Martin held on to a gloved ball behind the stumps.

Cloney looked to turn the screw further with the introduction of spinners Stevie Hanna and Gary Knox. In fact for Hanna it was the start of a dominant performance as he grabbed 2 wickets inside his first 4 overs, one clean bowled and the second saw an amazing catch from Knox in the deep remove the dangerous Thakur and leave Cregagh reeling at 31 for 3.

Martin continued to mix up his bowling options to unsettle the visitors and again it did the trick as Willie Fisher picked up a wicket, thanks to a sharp catch by his wicketkeeper captain.

Cloney continued to force the issue and after a brief Cregagh fight back in which they had progressed to 74 for 4, soon curbed the visitors’ intentions. With Hanna and Stevenson reintroduced in tandem the opponents slumped to 82 for 8, with both picking up 2 further wickets. Hanna claimed his wickets with a caught and bowled effort while he had Colin Martin to than for another catch. Stevenson on the other hand did all the work himself with a clean bowled and LBW decision.

Marshall returned to replace Hanna who finished with excellent figures of 4 wickets for 4 runs from his 10 over allotment. Marshall immediately struck as his skipper held onto another catch behind to leave Cregagh at 82 for 9.

The Cregagh tail enders then showed some resilience as they moved the score onto 103 before Matthew Lyttle wrapped up their innings by rearranging the furniture in the 1st ball of the 45th over.

Along with Hanna’s fine figures Jonny Stevenson put in a good shift in claiming final figures of 3 for 26 from 10 overs. In all Keith called upon 8 bowlers, who all showed no signs of rustiness and played a part in the demise of the Cregagh innings.

After the tea break Cloney sought about chasing down the 104 target to finish of the job they started so well in the field. It was up to Hanna and Knox to set the platform, and they seemed to be going along comfortably until Knox played a rash shot in the 8th over after reaching 13 and the Cloney total on 28.

Next up was Colin Martin and after immediately getting off the mark, he was soon caught on the crease and adjudged LBW to jangle a few nerves as the Cloney as the scoreboard read 33 for 2 with 9 overs gone.

There was no need to worry as the wily Hanna was joined by the experienced Lyness Topping in the middle and the two of them eased their team to victory. Both players bided their time as they rotated the strike with good running between the wickets and dispatched any poor or wayward deliveries.

In the end Cloney reached the target in the 27th over with Hanna unbeaten on 37 and Topping on 23, in a stand that yielded 71 runs.

Skipper Keith Martin was delighted with the whole performance, ‘we approached the game with a great attitude. We had Cregagh on the back from the off, all the 8 bowlers used showed great consistency and they were backed by good work in the outfield. Although we lost 2 wickets we never looked in any danger in our run chase’.

Finally Keith paid special praise to the performance of Hanna, ‘he was absolutely brilliant today, he has set the standard, hopefully he can maintain these levels and this inspires the rest of the lads to replicate his form’.

Donacloney would like to thank Tommy Knox for the ball sponsorship for Saturday’s victorious opening match against Cregagh.

Cloney season continues with a home fixture against Academy next Saturday, while the 2nd XI start there season away to Downpatrick followed by a home fixture on May Day Monday against Derriaghy.

From → Match Reports

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