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Steven Hanna inspires Donaghcloney to victory

by admim on April 27th, 2014

The 2014 season got of to a great start with wins for both the 1st XI and 2nd XI. At the Factory Ground Donaghcloney hosted Cooke Collegians. Having been relegated last year the club have high expectations and are keen to return to Section next year. It was therefore necessary to get the season off to a good start. Early in the week the threat of rain over the weekend faded and the Factory Ground looked great in the April sunshine.

Friday night getting the ground ready for first game of the season

At this point we have to thank all those who have given up hours of their personal time to get the ground fit for purpose. Special thanks as always go to Steven Hanna who tends to point us all in the right direction. Stephen, Matthew and Richard Lyttle have been great in setting up nets, getting the covers sorted and generally tidying the place up. Raymie Matthews and Phil Derby have shared the load on the 135 in getting the outfield into shape. Dessie Martin and Timmy McClure have been on hand, getting their hands dirty and helping out where needed. Willie Fisher and Alan Harland helped with all the advertising boards and cleaning up the pavilion. It’s great to see so many make an effort no matter how small. Without everyone chipping in the club just couldn’t function to the level it does, so a big thank you to you all.

So back to the cricket. Donaghcloney were asked to bat after skipper Keith Martin lost the toss. With the wicket looking good, hopes of getting a healthy total started to slip as Phil Derby (0), Alan Harland(9), Mansing(0) Shane Warren (16) and Matthew Lyttle(5) all fell cheaply and Donaghcloney were 54-5 after 13 overs and not Looking good. The first partnership of any note came from new recruit and club debutant Stephen Lecky and Keith Martin. Stephen has transferred from Lurgan and while is primarily a quick bower has shown lots of ability with the bat. The pair looked comfortable at the wicket when Stephen walked across his stumps and trapped leg before, giving C Shekar his 5th victim. Jonny Stevenson(3) and Gareth Copeland (6) didn’t last long either and it was all Cooke Collegians at this stage as Donaghcloney were 82-8 and in a mess. The two old grey haired left handed batsmen of Steven Hanna and Keith battled on with Keith eventually holing out to mid off for 30 after chasing a wide half volley. With the score at 107-9 the pragmatic Timmy McClure came to the crease. Over the next half hour the momentum of the game changed with Steven and Timmy putting on 58 for the last partnership. Both players played their shots and rotated the strike and taking singles that were on offer. Timmy finally fellĀ  for 17 leaving Steven Hanna stranded on 30. What a day it was going to be for him, it was about to get a whole lot better.

After tea Cooke Collegians came out to bat and never got started. The opening two bowlers Of Stephen Lecky and Steven Hanna bowled unchanged for 15 overs and in that time took all 10 Cooke Collegian wickets. Lecky with his pace came down the hill from the River End. He bowled accurately and looked hostile in what was a fairly slow pitch. He ended up with figures of 8 overs 2 maidens 15 runs and 2 wickets. At the other end Hanna posted his lifetime best figures of 7 overs 3 maidens 7 runs and 8 wickets in a remarkable spell of left arm spin bowling. Hanna bowled straight and no one in the Cooke Collegian team came to terms with the flight and deception while they were facing him. The last six batsmen failed to score a run between them and Cooke Collegians were all out for a disappointing 24. Hanna said afterwards “That’s my best ever figures. Some days its just your day and today it was my turn.” Scorecard

Meanwhile in Holywood the 2nd XI were also having success. With several players not available because of exams Donaghcloney traveled to Cultra hoping to start the season of well. Holywood won the toss and choose to bowl first. At 20-2 Donaghcloney hadn’t got off to a great start but a fine stand of 88 from Stephen Lyttle and 33 from Johnny Dowds in a partnership of 125 saw the team into a solid position. With 8 overs to go, that allowed for some late hitting from stand in captain Richard Lyttle and Kyle Weir. At the end of the allotted 35 overs Donaghcloney had set Holywood 201 to win. With a large total to defend the bowlers took the initiative from the start and never let Holywood batsmen get a foot hold in the game. A fine opening 13 overs from Jobin Joy of 1-15 with a very promising future in store from this impressive spin bowler and Rory woods with his unplayable pace for 2-15 had the game tied up. The rest of the bowers managed to keep the run rate well below the required rate and took wickets at regular intervals to insure Donaghcloney won the first game of the season by an impressive 71 runs. A special shout out has to go Conor Woods who took two wickets on his 2XI debut and for Andrew Fisher who also bowled and took 2 marvelous catches that anyone would have been proud off.

From → Match Reports

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