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Delany emerges as major doubt for Ireland's World Cup mission against the Netherlands



On your way: Ruhan Pretorius is dismissed

On your way: Ruhan Pretorius is dismissed

On your way: Ruhan Pretorius is dismissed

Gareth Delany is a major doubt for next week’s World Cup Super League games against Netherlands after twisting his knee in the warm-up before yesterday’s Interprovincial Cup clash between Munster Reds and Northern Knights.

The Ireland all-rounder hobbled out of Sydney Parade after the game was abandoned three overs short of a result, and a decision will be taken today whether he has a chance of making the flight on Sunday.

A replacement can be named from outside the four named travelling reserves and there are players on stand by.

There was another scare when Graeme McCarter did not take the field when the Knights went out to defend their all-out total of 276, the recalled international having been hit flush on the foot when batting. But last night there was no concern.

The rain arrived in Pembroke 17 overs into the Reds chase, and at that stage they were just two runs behind the DLS par score. A minimum of 20 overs must be bowled to get a result but a persistent drizzle refused to relent.

Luke Georgeson continued his fine start to his Knights career to top score with 63 and shared a stand of 119 with skipper Harry Tector, whose 47 off 63 balls will give him confidence next week.

Paul Stirling looked in great shape for 25 balls and then edged one behind, the second of four wickets for Lisburn’s Josh Manley.

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Mark Adair and Ruhan Pretorius struggled to find their line with the new ball and when Munster reached 28 for one in the seventh over, half of the runs were wides.

Pretorius was unlucky not to get a second wicket when Murray Commins was dropped third ball by Neil Rock to complete a frustrating day for him and Knights; he was caught by Commins at cover, a loose drive, eight short of a half-century.

The Woodvale all-rounder will be back in action in the first of all eight teams’ double-headers, tonight and tomorrow, to complete the group stages of the Lagan Valley Steels T20 Cup.

However, all the Ireland squad members have been ordered to sit out the games, so CIYMS will be without Adair and Graham Kennedy for their big clash with Carrickfergus tonight when victory will confirm the holders’ place in the semi-finals.

McCarter’s absence from the Carrick side is a blow, however, as they aim to leapfrog CI and put themselves in pole position to make the last-four.

North Down, who are level on points with Carrickfergus in third place, are the other NCU team affected by Irish call-ups so will be without Stirling and Craig Young for their last two games against Instonians tonight and Lisburn.

In the North West, Andy McBrine misses Donemana’s White Horse T20 Cup game against St Johnston, although that is more notable for being the visitors’ first game of the season. The first was abandoned because of Covid restrictions in the Republic and they then suffered two wash-outs.

The four group winners go through to the Faughan Valley Cup semi-finals. Eglinton can take a huge stride with victory at Fox Lodge tomorrow.

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