Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 December 2014

Donemana set to give McBrine golden farewell

Got him: Gareth McKeegan celebrates a wicket for Brigade
Got him: Gareth McKeegan celebrates a wicket for Brigade

Donemana took command and a 142-run lead into the second day of the Danske Bank North West Senior Cup final, with all 10 second innings wickets in hand, after bowling out Brigade for just 140.

It could have been even worse for the Beechgrove side, who have lost all five cup finals against Donemana, but for a last wicket stand of 41, dominated by Richard Hepburn.

He scored all but five of the runs in his partnership with Mark Simpson, but it seems unlikely to be enough to prevent Junior McBrine signing off his illustrious career with an 11th winners' medal.

McBrine, playing his 14th Senior Cup final, played an eight-ball cameo, with three boundaries, to get Donemana up to 244 for seven and immediately held a superb reflex catch at slip to dismiss Ian McGregor. His day was complete when he had the dangerous Johnny Thompson caught on the deep mid-wicket boundary as Brigade collapsed from 58 for two to 99 for nine.

The chief destroyer was the other former Donemana captain and slow left armer in the team, Jordan McGonigle, who conceded just 19 runs in his 10 overs and took four wickets. He started the collapse, having Matty Moran caught off a top edge sweep and next ball had captain Gareth McKeegan caught at the wicket.

McKeegan had said that the Brigade powerhouse was their middle order, but Thompson took 20 balls trying to get off the mark – and failing – and professional Digviyay Amarnath and Andy Britton were two of the seven batsmen who failed to reach double figures.

Andy McBrine had led the Donemana batting with 51 after 56 balls and after a steady start, in which Tom Riddles fell just short of 50, the Tyrone side scored 138 off the last 20 overs, including 56 in the last six.

Donemana chose not to enforce the follow-on and there was time for the holders to ram home their advantage in a further 10 overs before the light faded.

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