The Northern Knights require a further 69 runs with eight wickets left to beat the North West Warriors after a bowler-dominated day at Stormont in the Newstalk Inter-Provincial game.
Resuming overnight on 143-5 in pursuit of the Warriors first innings total of 190, the Knights were dismissed for 187 as Tabish Khan blew away the middle order and tail with a fine exhibition of seam and swing bowling.
Nathan Waller (38) struck a few lusty blows to almost achieve parity, before giving Khan his sixth wicket of the innings.
Their total of 187 gave the Warriors a first innings lead of three, but skipper Andy McBrine wasn’t able to bat with a shoulder injury.
After paceman Allen Coulter struck two early blows, Niall McDonnell (37) and Ernest Kemm (24) led the Warriors recovery a third wicket stand of 68 only for the wheels to come off.
A promising 76-2 became 79-6, and although Ricky-Lee Dougherty (41) and Gary McClintock (23) adding 54 for the seventh wicket, they were dismissed for 150 as Waller took four wickets.
Chris Dougherty fell for a duck and Nick Larkin (37) was trapped lbw by Kemm late in the day, but Craig Ervine (34*) and Andrew White saw the Knights safely to the close on 85 for 2.
Meanwhile, NCU Challenge Cup holders Waringstown have been drawn against local rivals Lurgan in the quarter-finals. The pick of the ties sees Instonians playing CIYMS. Section One survivors Downpatrick will host Muckamore while Civil Service North face Carrickfergus.