Cricket: Downpatrick are demolished
The gap between the top three and the rest in the Ulster Bank Premier League was shown up by Saturday's one-sided games as North Down, Waringstown and Instonians beat Derriaghy, Lurgan and Downpatrick respectively.
The game at Shaw's Bridge was the earliest finish in the top section as Downpatrick were bowled out for just 82 in less than 31 overs. Jac Arunkumar's miserable season continued with a duck and although Neil Gelston and James Magowan then put on 37 for the second wicket, the last seven batsmen scored just 15 between them.
Instonians then knocked off the runs inside 17 overs for the loss of Rory McCann with Robbie Kirk finishing 40 not out.
The other two games, supposedly between relegation rivals, produced margins of victory which were just as emphatic.
Civil Service North will probably appeal their four points deduction for the void game against Derriaghy, but on Saturday they showed they are determined to stay up on the pitch with a seven wicket win against Lisburn.
Ewan Thompson took his second six-for of the season to help bowl out Lisburn for just 103 - the New Zealander taking five of the last six wickets which fell for six runs. CSN skipper Nigel Jones then scored 41, Gary Wilson a quickfire 17 and Thompson, inevitably, won the match with an unbeaten 23.
Carrickfergus assured themselves of Section One cricket for another year with a 113 runs victory against Bangor. Paul Coverdale with 63 and 40s from Barry Cooper and captain Ryan Eagleson gave Carrick a total of 226 for six and when Mark Hutchinson and Yasas Tillakaratne went early, the writing was on the wall for the visitors.
Lurgan are still bottom after their 60 runs defeat to their nearest neighbours, and their last match in the top flight for at least a year will be against Carrickfergus next weekend.
Professional Niranjan Godbole can go into Saturday's game at Middle Road in a little bit of form after finally scoring his third half century of the campaign. He made 77 against Waringstown, but having lost five partners for 65, Lurgan's rain-reduced target of 223 from 42 overs was well out of reach.