Nikolai Smith confident Instonians can heap on the pressure

Nikolai Smith
Nikolai Smith

Any realistic challenge to Waringstown comes in the shape of Instonians and captain Nikolai Smith is looking forward to the club’s two games this weekend.

Smith was modest enough not to mention his 94 against Phoenix last week, that alongside 70 from Andrew White and a quick-fire 45 from Shannon augurs well.

The captain has something like 600 runs to his name so far this year, but admits it won’t be easy this weekend.

“Derriaghy will be tough at their place, they will come hard and it may not exactly suit us,” he said.

“We are without Neil Russell for the weekend so potentially Stephen Bunting will open with myself.

“Sunday is interesting, I believe the pressure is on Waringstown. They are expected to not only beat us but win the league as well.

“I think that this will give us the freedom to play our own style of cricket and express ourselves.

“We have Rusty Theron back from his Irish Cup ban; he bowled really well in the league against CSNI and then we have Robert McKinley also bowling really quickly right now.

“Then as we have said before the rejuvenated Andrew White rolling back the years and looking like he is really enjoying himself. The fact that we have been drawn against them in the Irish Cup also makes it interesting as this will be the first of three games.”

North Down and Lisburn meet at The Green.

Lisburn’s Adam Berry is upbeat ahead of the clash:

“I finally think we are starting to click, it was great for me as a captain and for the team to get through to the T20 final, something to look forward to,” he said.

“Now we need to take this positivity into the league and playing at Comber should be a top batting track as usual.”