Testing weekend ends brightly for Town, CSN
The NCU enjoyed their best day in the Irish Senior Cup for many years when Waringstown and Civil Service North made up for the disappointment of losing their Challenge Cup semi-finals on Saturday to complete a wonderful double triumph and reach the last four with victories in Dublin.
Leinster teams have dominated this competition since the turn of the century but, for the first time since 2011, there are two NCU semi-finalists after Waringstown beat Clontarf in a high-scoring thriller by six runs and Civil Service North enjoyed a more comfortable four wickets win over Leinster.
The star of the day for the Villagers was professional Ruhan Pretorius who hit six sixes in an over off Conor D'Arcy on his way to bringing up his century off the last ball of the innings which totalled a massive 316 for five.
But Clontarf were never going to go down wondering and captain Eoghan Delany nearly pulled off a remarkable triumph, but even scoring 23 off the last over proved too much for him. Greg Thompson managed to keep him to just 16.
But Thompson owed his side nothing having shared an unbroken stand of 154 with the South African as Waringstown doubled the score in the last 14 overs.
Pretorius faced just 49 balls and hit eight fours and one other six while Thompson hit 66 off exactly the same number of balls with 10 fours and a six.
CSN were just as impressive in their chase of Leinster's 228 for nine, Jason van der Merwe taking four wickets just three days after getting married.
In a horror start for the second successive day, Wayne Horwood and Regan West were out in the first four overs with the total on six but Mansoor Amjad put the Stormont side back on track with 84 from 91 balls (10 fours and two sixes) and when he was fifth out, his side needed only 22 from 12.2 overs.
Amjad shared stands of 88 with skipper Andrew Cowden and 89 with Shane Getkate and youngsters Chris McMorran and Paddy Beverland won the game with 44 balls to spare.
Instonians made it a weekend double, following up their Ulster Bank Challenge Cup semi-final success against CSN with a four wickets win over Carrickfergus, who remain the only team in the Premier League without a point.
The victory moves Instonians level with leaders CIYMS and Waringstown, who meet at Belmont on Saturday, on three wins.
Nicolai Smith dislocated his thumb attempting a return catch off Carrick top scorer Jamie Holmes and was unable to open the innings when Anthony Martin dismissed Neil Russell and Jordan McClurkin in his first two overs and was unlucky not to remove James Shannon and Fahad Iqbal with edges falling tantalisingly short of fielders.
But a second successive half century from Andrew White eased Instonians to their victory target of 189 in the 46th over.
Irish Senior Cup quarter-finals Castle Avenue: Waringstown 316-5 (R Pretorius 101 not out, G Thompson 66 not out, A Dennison 55, L Nelson 35; J Morrissey 2-30) Clontarf 310-9 (B Coghlan 94, E Delany 85 not out, R Forrest 60; G Kidd 3-59, K McCallan 2-39, G Thompson). Waringstown won by 6 runs.
Rathmines: Leinster 228-9 (J Carroll 48, H MacDonnell 37, C Mallon 36, T Ritchie 30, P Johnston 25; J van der Merwe 4-31, S Getkate 2-49) Civil Service North 231-6 (42.4 overs, M Amjad 84, S Getkate 41, A Cowden 33, J van der Merwe 25; J Carroll 4-42). CSN won by 4 wickets.
Malahide: Pembroke 198 (47.2 overs, R Kelly 59) Malahide 142 (36.1 overs.
Pembroke won by 56 runs.
Balrothery: Merrion 312 (49.1 overs, T Kane 107, North County 180 (29.3 overs, B Parchment 70).
Merrion won by 132 runs.
Ulster Bank Premier League
Shaw's Bridge: Carrickfergus 188 (48.1 overs, J Holmes 62, I Kamtekar 35, A Haggan 29; S Bunting 3-26, A White 2-45, F Iqbal 2-47) Instonians 189-6 (45.2 overs, A White 67 not out, J Shannon 46, E Layard 34, F Iqbal 27; A Martin 2-32).
Instonians won by 4 wickets.