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A Great Year for Donaghcloney Cricket Club

by admim on September 8th, 2014

(Back row) Tim McClure Keith Martin Steven Leckey Jonny Stevenson Gary Knox Charlie McCrum (Front Row) Maning Nigade Matthew Lyttle David Marshall Steven Hanna Alan Harland

With 2 wins from the last 3 games Donaghcloney 1st XI finish second in the league and gain promotion back up into Section 1. Wins over Drumeness and Victoria secured promotion going into the last week of the season. Academy needed to lose to Victoria and Cloney beat Armagh to be league champions. Unfortunately with a depleted side, Donaghcloney traveled to The Mall where Armagh proved too strong on this the last day of the season. Armagh posted 180 and Donaghcloney managed 99 in reply and it was the bowling of the experienced Davie Bullock who had figures of 5 for 13 that proved the difference in the two sides. The outcome of the match mattered little as Academy ran out easy winners against Victoria and secured the the Section 2 league title. Skipper Keith Martin said “Its been a good season for us. I think it was important to bounce back up into Section 1 after relegation last year. We have had the odd hiccup along the way and at times made life difficult for ourselves but managed to secure second spot and go up. Looking back on the year Mansing has been superb for us with nearly 1000 runs and Steven Hanna¬† has been excellent with the ball claiming 40 wickets. Steven Leckey has been a major boost to the squad this year and he has put in consistent performances with bat and ball. Likewise Charlie McCrum who has played for Donaghcloney this year has added to our batting and bringing his wealth of experience to the squad. Next year will be tough and the younger members of the squad like Phil Derby, Matthew Lyttle and Jonny Stevenson need to be putting in more consistent performances if we are to compete in Section 1.”

It wasn’t only the 1st XI who got promoted this year but the second XI finished 2nd in Junior League 3 and will their successful season will see them in up in Junior League 2. With 10 wins from their 13 games they finished 2nd in the league to Carrickfergus. The second XI have benefited from a stronger and bigger 1st XI squad this year meaning the they have had a much more balanced team themselves. Runs have come from Steven Lyttle who has blasted his way to nearly 400 runs this year and ably supported by Richie Clydesdale, Gareth Copeland and Richard Lyttle. Wickets have been shared out throughout the team with Willie Fisher and the two Joy brothers Justin and Jobin taking wickets week in and week out. Colin Derby who has captained the team this year said “It’s been a team performance from start to finish. All the boys have pitched in and got runs or wickets when we needed them. We are all looking forward to next year where Junior League 2 and we can hopefully prove we are capable of competing at that level.”

Donaghcloney¬† 3rd XI finished a respectable 3rd in their league Junior 8. This league was dominated by Muckamore and Academy 4th XI where Donaghcloney won 6¬† of their 13 games played. Skipper Raymie Matthews said “Our team is a mixture of youth and experience. Its great that Donaghcloney can put out a 3rd XI week in and week out and hopefully next year we can up our performance a level or two. We have a great youth structure at the moment and that can only filter through into the rest of the club. We are looking forward to what next year brings.”

Keith Ogle in his first year as Chairman of the club said “It’s been a great year for Donaghcloney Cricket Club. Obviously we are delighted both the 1st and 2nd XI got promoted but the Under 11’s winning their league and finishing runners up in their cup competition for me is the highlight. This is where the future of the club lies and where the future of village cricket as we know it. If cricket is to survive kids have to be given the opportunity to play week in and week out, only then can they grow to love the sport. Donaghcloney has come a long way in the last 5 years. It wasn’t that long ago we struggled to put out 2 senior teams on a Saturday and youth cricket was non existant. Credit must go to Steevn Hanna, Bruce Topping and Mansing for kick starting the turn around in youth cricket. However now is the time we have to keep working and not sit back on our laurels so hopefully Donaghcloney can continue to prosper.”

From → Match Reports

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