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Cookstown face difficult IBA Senior Cup hurdle

By David Mason

Published 25/05/2015

Roll them up: Ryan Bell from Mossley takes on Bangor
Roll them up: Ryan Bell from Mossley takes on Bangor

If Cookstown go on to lift the IBA Senior Cup this season, they'll certainly have taken the most difficult route.

They blitzed the fancied St James's Gate at the weekend, but their reward is a testing third round date at Belmont on June 30.

"They don't come much more difficult," said Cookstown's Colin Hogg. "I suppose when you get down to the last 16, your always going to be handed a tough draw.

"We produced possibly our best performance of the season to defeat St James's Gate - a team that have gone close to winning the cup in recent years.

"We'll require a similar type of display when we go to Belmont."

It was Hogg's rink that turned in the most impressive showing by racking up a 28-9 win against the combination skipped by former international Stephen Millane. Damien McElroy also made a signification contribution by beating Robbie Maher 30-17.

But the Dubliners hit back with Shane and Richard Leonard enjoying victories against Mark Wilson (17-15) and Colm McHugh (20-11).

Coleraine, the 2013 Irish Cup winners, are also back in the third round mix - they will entertain high-flying Larne at Lodge Road next time out.

The Bannsiders demonstrated they have the artillery to go the distance once again by claiming an impressive 10 shots win against Portadown.

Cup specialists Belmont, meanwhile, grabbed a little bit of revenge by sending Old Bleach spinning out of the tournament.

The Randalstown side grabbed a PGL Cup win only 48 hours earlier, but Belmont were in no mood for a repeat showing. Terry Crawford and Robin Horner grabbed the crucial wins against Johnny Miller (22-16) and James Talbot (23-16).

Old Bleach replied through Michael Nutt and Neil Booth, who chalked up narrow wins against Roy Battersby (21-20) and Stuart Bennett (20-18).

Results: IBA Senior Cup, second round: Albert Foundry 56 Ballymoney 86, Ballymena 95 Aer Lingus 54, Bangor 100 Mossley 48, Belmont 81 Old Bleach 71, CYM 93 Letterkenny 63, Coleraine 92 Portadown 82, Cookstown 84 St James's Gate 63, Dromore 98 Leinster 68, Dunbarton 112 Dunluce 56, Dundonald 85 Bray 62, Portrush 101 Pickie 52, Larne 78 Lisnagarvey 71, Lurgan 83 Balmoral 77, Rathfriland 76 Carrick 101.

IBA Junior Cup, second round: Bray 67 Old Bleach 92, Balmoral 82 Castlerock 81, Portadown B 96 Lisnagarvey B 56, Cookstown B 87 Carrick B 56, Dunluce 100 Antrim 49, Kilrea 93 Hilden 59, Portrush B 80 Ewarts B 78, Pickie 90 Willowfield 59, Forth River 78 Lurgan B 73, Ulster Transport 96 Ballycastle 66.

Draw: IBA Senior Cup, round three: Bangor v Portrush, Belmont v Cookstown, Coleraine v Larne, City of Derry v Whitehead, CYM v Ballymoney, Dromore v Ballymena, Lurgan v Dundonald, Carrick v Dunbarton.

IBA Junior Cup, round three: Ballymoney v Coleraine/Falls, Old Bleach v Dunluce, Brookgreen v Lagan Valley, Forth River v Balmoral, Dunbarton v Cookstown, Portadown v Pickie, Portrush v Kilrea, Ulster Transport v Whitehead.

Belfast Telegraph

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