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Donemana on course for double - and that's no joke

Senior Cup champions set for crack at T20 final but its a damper for CI

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Wash-out: Donemana’s Andy McBrine and William McClintock as rain stops play during the clash with CIYMS at Bready Cricket Club

Wash-out: Donemana’s Andy McBrine and William McClintock as rain stops play during the clash with CIYMS at Bready Cricket Club

Colm Lenghan/Pacemaker Press

Wash-out: Donemana’s Andy McBrine and William McClintock as rain stops play during the clash with CIYMS at Bready Cricket Club

Donemana will play YMCA in the final of the All-Ireland T20 Cup next Saturday at a venue to be confirmed after the Leinster winners overcame Cork County in yesterday's second semi-final.

The North West side had lulled everyone into a false sense of security after winning the Senior Cup last weekend, with captain William McClintock saying they would turn up at Bready on Saturday for a 'bit of craic' - the big trophy already safely back at The Holm.

But CIYMS didn't see the funny side as their hopes of retaining the T20 crown were ended 10 overs early, when rain arrived at the Magheramason ground and the NCU side one run behind of the DLS par score.

Captain Nigel Jones admitted there was no chance of a resumption even before the umpires formally abandoned the match after a heavy shower, with CI one wicket away from claiming victory themselves. It was that close.

CIYMS were due to host the final next weekend but because of the new lockdown restrictions which come into force today, depending on what the Northern Ireland Executive say Cricket Ireland may be forced to move the venue - with Comber a likely alternative - and they admitted yesterday they were looking at options, depending on the Executive's clarification today.

With CI losing the semi, there is certain to be a second match next weekend, the play-off game on Sunday between the 2019 and 2020 winners to determine Ireland's representative in next year's European Cricket League.

The NCU champions were due to play in this year's Euro (T10) league but it was cancelled because of the pandemic so to rectify that anomaly they were always getting a second chance, if they did not win this year's All-Ireland competition. The play-off details are expected to be confirmed today.

In yesterday's semi-final, YMCA, who had defeated Railway Union in the Leinster final on Saturday, completed a 40 runs win over Cork County with new Ireland international Curtis Campher, the second bowler in the match to take four wickets. The other was Cork's Rudolph Pollard whose haul included a hat-trick, his first and second wickets 16 overs apart!

Another bowler to take four wickets on Saturday was Donemana's Jordan McGonigle, the slow left armer's coming in the space of eight balls as CIYMS were restricted to 141-7.

It was a total CI would have been happy with when they were 7-2 after four overs, both wickets for William McBrine who started with two maidens - almost unheard of in T20 cricket - but after a third wicket stand of 92 between Chris Dougherty (48) and Jason van der Merwe (58) they would have hoping for more.

But McGonigle dismissed both in his second spell and despite the loss of their Senior Cup final man of the match Dean Mehaffey for 10, Andy McBrine, promoted to open, and captain William McClintock stayed together and with seven runs off the 10th over, saw Donemana did enough - just.

In Saturday's domestic finals, Glendermott won the Eric Cooke Cup with a seven wickets victory over Ardmore.

With rain falling at The Rectory the teams agreed to play just the minimum five overs in the second innings setting the home side a target of 40, in response to Ardmore's 122-8. They won with two balls to spare.

But there was tragedy at the end of the Faughan Valley Cup final at Newbuildings when former Sion Mills player Billy Given collapsed and died.

A keen local photographer, Billy had just taken the presentation pictures of the hosts' three wickets victory over Fox Lodge.

Bangor won the final trophy in the NCU with an eight wickets victory over Drumaness Superkings.

Yesterday's scores: YMCA 131-8 (B Gamble 30, H Tector 26, W de Klerk 20; R Pollard 4-30 inc hat-trick, N Anjum 2-15, A Saddique 2-19) Cork County 91 (19.5 overs; C Campher 4-13, R Anders 2-13, S Singh 2-21). YMCA won by 40 runs.

Belfast Telegraph