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Campbell's class guides Coleraine into last four

 

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Alana Dalzell

Alana Dalzell

Alana Dalzell

Coleraine are the first team through to the semi-finals of the Senior Cup, after confirming first place in Group 1 of the Lagan Valley Steels T20 Cup yesterday.

Scott Campbell, with an undefeated 68, saw them to a total of 135-3 at Ballyspallen, enough to ensure a fourth win of the campaign, all by maximum points, by 57 runs.

Campbell shared a second wicket stand of 75 with Graham Hume, whose 42 came off 40 balls, and in a blistering finish, Campbell scored all but 13 of the 52 runs that came off the last five overs.

Ballyspallen, who were bowled out for 46 on Saturday en route to a seven wickets defeat by Eglinton, reached 78 yesterday in their 20 overs but only James Thompson, with two fours and three sixes, put up any resistance.

The other semi-finalists will be decided next Saturday with Brigade and Donemana favourites to join them, but in Group 3 it will be a shoot-out at Ballymagorry for top place after Fox Lodge and Bready both won on Saturday.

In a thrilling finish at Burndennett, Johnny Robinson bowled Marty Mehaffey with the last ball to keep the Foxes' hopes alive. If Mehaffey had hit a four, Bready would have already won the group following their eight wickets victory at Strabane.

Bready included 19-year-old Alana Dalzell in their line-up, believed to be only the third woman to play senior cricket in the North West after Ireland internationals Nikki Squires and Julie Logue. Alana bowled the final two overs in the Strabane innings, had two catches dropped and conceded just nine runs as the Red Caps finished on 115-6.

Jason Milligan, who came to the middle at 7-2, led the Foxes recovery, from 19-4, to finish 77 not out from 53 balls, hitting six fours and three sixes in the home side's 143-6.

Brigade won the big game of the day against Newbuildings despite a last over scare at Beechgrove. The visitors needed 24 off the last over but Ross Dougherty refused to go quietly and hit 17 before the balls ran out.

Chasing Brigade's 120-7 - there was a recovery here as Ross Allen scored 55 not out to rescue last year's double winners from 68-7, which included four wickets for Johnny Thompson - Newbuildings were looking good at 63-2. But Ifti Hussain dismissed Thompson and followed up with a hat-trick to put Brigade back in control.

St Johnston won the other Group B game by seven wickets with two overs to spare, Michael Rankin's unbeaten 60 seeing them past Glendermott's 151-7.

Donemana, after their shock defeat by Killyclooney in midweek, got back to winning ways in emphatic style against Bonds Glen. The T20 Cup holders needed only six overs to reach their target of 89 with captain William McClintock plundering an unbeaten 64, all but two of his runs in boundaries (five fours and seven sixes) in a 10 wickets victory.

Killyclooney kept the pressure on, however, with Tim Dougherty their hero as they defended 128. Ardmore needed 20 off the last three overs but Dougherty's 18th over was a maiden and he conceded only three off the last as the visitors fell 11 runs short.

Yesterday's scores: Coleraine 135-3 (S Campbell 68 not out, G Hume 42; Ste Kennedy 2-8) Ballyspallen 78 (J Thompson 31; S Hutchinson 3-12, A Whitcroft 2-8). Coleraine won by 57 runs.

Belfast Telegraph