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Barr halts Cooke brothers charge to victory


Tommy Barr
Tommy Barr

By Ian Callender

Donemana extended their lead at the top of the Long's SuperValu Premiership table but the match of the day on Saturday was Strabane's victory, by the minimum margin, over Glendermott.

With Glendermott needing 228 for victory, only one result seemed possible when they slumped to 135-7 but David Cooke was still there and when he is joined by his brother, Gordon, nothing is impossible.

Sure enough, the veteran pair got the target down to 13 from the last over with Gordon racing to his 50, but Tommy Barr was Strabane's last-gasp hero, conceding just five runs from the first five deliveries so David Cooke's final ball six still left the home side one run short.

Chathuru Peiris dominated the Red Caps innings with an unbeaten 123 from 80 balls, with almost 100 of his runs in boundaries (nine fours and 10 sixes). He then followed up with three wickets to put Strabane in control until the Cooke brothers - Gordon finished 61 not out from just 36 balls with eight fours and a six - gave them a scare.

It was Strabane's first league win of the season and leaves Glendermott stranded at the bottom, already 64 points behind Donemana after three games.

The leaders didn't have it all their own way at Ballyspallen, after being bowled out in the 44th over for just 196 and then watching the home reach 79-1 in reply. But Dwayne McGerrigle broke the partnership between Andy Christie and Adam McDaid and another four wickets followed for the addition of just 25 runs.

Brendon Louw provided late resistance but when McGerrigle returned to breach his defence, it was all over just 15 runs later, with the former Ireland international, now bowling much slower than when playing for Ireland 20 years ago, finishing with five wickets and giving Donemana 22 more points in the table.

Donemana had only one half-century partnership, for the fifth wicket between Levi Dougherty and William McClintock, but both were out in the 50s - McClintock hitting all but six of his 52 runs in boundaries - and the last five wickets fell for 43 runs.

Title favourites Brigade managed only 11 overs at Coleraine and Eglinton and Bready were just six overs short of a result when rain ended the match after Eglinton had been bowled out for 144.

SCORES - Bridge Park: Donemana 196 (43.3 overs, L Dougherty 57, D McGerrigle 52; B Louw 3-49) Ballyspallen 150 (35.1 overs, B Louw 42, A McDaid 28, A Christie 27; D McGerrigle 5-31, J McGonigle 4-34). Donemana (22 pts) beat Ballyspallen (3 pts) by 46 runs.

The Rectory: Strabane 227-6 (32 overs, C Peiris 123 not out, P Gillespie 35 not out, T Barr 24; K Wijerathne 3-33, G Burns 2-43) Glendermott 226-7 (32 overs, G Cooke 61 not out, S Moore 47, D Cooke 36 not out, R Robinson 24, K Wijerathne 21; C Peiris 3-44). Strabane (20 pts) beat Glendermott (5 pts) by 1 run.

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