NCU Challenge Cup holders Instonians and reigning Premier League champions CIYMS have been drawn against each other in next season’s cup competition.
Inst, who thrashed North Down by eight wickets in last season’s showpiece, will host the Belmont club at Shaw’s Bridge in one of two all-Premier League second round ties on Saturday, May 25.
The other tie sees Lisburn host North Down at Wallace Park, although with work having been done to relay the pitches at the Lisburn venue, the tie could yet be moved to The Green.
Waringstown, the 2011 winners, have been drawn away to the winners of the first round tie between Dundrum and Templepatrick.
Ulster Bank announced its renewed sponsorship of both competitions yesterday while it was also revealed that the final will take place at The Green in Comber.
The draw was made by National Coach, Phil Simmons, and Stephen Cruise of Ulster Bank.
Mr Cruise said: “Ulster Bank was delighted to again support local cricket. It’s been Senior League sponsor for almost 20 years and next season it will notch a hat trick in the Challenge Cup.
“Irish cricket has been one of sport’s huge successes in recent years and the Northern Cricket Union has played a large part in it.
“Ulster Bank has enjoyed a long and fruitful relationship with the NCU and is pleased to continue its support to a league and cup structure which has benefited the game so much at local and national level.”
The cup will be played between the eight Premiership and 10 Section 1 teams and the draw is:
First round (Saturday May 4): Dundrum v Templepatrick; Laurelvale v Cliftonville. Second round (Saturday, May 25): Derriaghy v Civil Service North; Downpatrick v Carrickfergus; Lurgan v Woodvale; Dundrum/Templepatrick v Waringstown; Muckamore v Ballymena; Instonians v CIYMS; Laurelvale/Cliftonville v Donacloney; Lisburn v North Down.