NCU T20 CRICKET: Waringstown and Instonians clinch crucial victories

Waringstown's James Hall
Waringstown's James Hall

It’s as you were at the top of the Ulster Bank NCU Premier League as title contenders Waringstown and Instonians both clinched important victories on Friday night.

Waringstown, the reigning champions, were indebted to a brilliant 78 from just 50 balls from James Hall as they beat North Down by 38 runs at The Green.

The unbeaten villagers posted 175 for seven batting first as Hall got the innings off to a real flier.

The former Ireland opener struck seven fours and four sixes as he dominated fine partnerships with Adam Dennison (20) and Lee Nelson (25).

Waringstown scored at a healthy rate all the way through with Alistair Shields taking 4-41 for the home side.

Needing almost nine runs per over, the home side were making a real fist of it when Pieter Malan smashed his way to 52 from 38 balls.

But Gary Kidd took a brilliant running catch at wide long-on to remove the South African off Kyle McCallan (2-17) and from there the North Down innings petered out to 137 for four despite an unbeaten 39 from 34 balls from Shields.

Kidd took 2-31 while Phil Eaglestone’s four overs cost just 20 runs.

Instonians, who were 68 for three in the 10th over chasing Carrickfergus’ modest 108, triumphed by 20 runs on Duckworth-Lewis against Carrick.

James Shannon struck a quickfire 44 for Inst.

Earlier Pat Botha top scored for 38 for Carrick who were always up against it after being reduced to 25 for three early on. Robert McKinley claimed 3-24 and there were two wickets each for Rusty Theron and Nikolai Smith.

At The Green: Waringstown beat North Down by 38 runs. Waringstown 175-7 (J Hall 78, L Nelson 25, A Dennison 20, A Shields 4-41); North Down 137-4 (P Malan 51, A Shields 39 no, P Davison 23 no, K McCallan 2-17, G Kidd 2-31)

At Shaw’s Bridge: Carrickfergus 108-8 (20 overs, P Botha 38, A Haggan 25; R McKinley 3-24, N Smith 2-12, R Theron 2-20) Instonians 68-3 (9.3 overs, J Shannon 44). Instonians won by 20 runs DLS.