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Cricket: Determined Waringstown refuse to give up on their double dream

By David Holmes

The last acts of the 2006 Ulster Bank Premier League will be played out this weekend with three fixtures tomorrow and one on Sunday.

The last acts of the 2006 Ulster Bank Premier League will be played out this weekend with three fixtures tomorrow and one on Sunday.

It has been an enthralling season with once again North Down and Waringstown proving to be several classes above the competition.

Waringstown the Challenge Cup winners must win away to Bangor and hope that third-placed Lisburn can upset North Down to become joint winners as happened last year.

For North Down it is a case more of anti-climax rather than climax as the last 10 days have been shrouded in doubts surrounding the Peter Connell registration saga.

Captain Ryan Haire is glad to put all this behind him:

"It was disconcerting Monday week ago to see the story surrounding Peter's eligibility.

"We were aware of the facts but to an outsider reading the story, it appeared that we were in the wrong.

"As a club we felt we were perceived as guilty until proved innocent. The subsequent delays around the investigation did little to help matters, but all along we were confident that we had complied with all that was asked from us, he said.

"This week's verdict and statement from the NCU Management Committee was a huge relief for us all and it confirmed that we had provided complete and correct documentation at the outset.

"For me personally, it has still been a great season and this hasn't taken any of the gloss off it although this has attempted to take attention away from what we have achieved on the field. "Already we have won the Lion Sports Twenty20 Cup and Clubturf Ulster Cup and are top of the league, with only one defeat all season.

"As a team we are all looking forward to this weekend's game and although we will not take Lisburn lightly, I hope we can look forward to celebrating a magnificent treble come Saturday evening," continued the North Down skipper.

Saturday's other match will see Instonians attempt to clinch fourth place when they play Lurgan at Pollock Park.

On Sunday relegated Cliftonville will play their last home game in the Premier League against CSNI.

Ulster Bank Premier League Saturday: Lisburn v North Down; Bangor v Waringstown; Lurgan v Instonians.

Section II: Armagh v Derriaghy; Cooke Collegains v CIYMS.

Premier League Sunday: Cliftonville v CSNI.

Section II: Dunmurry v Laurelvale; Muckamore v Larne.

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