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Hunter shows class to fire holders Methody into Schools' Cup final

 

Aaron Hamilton
Aaron Hamilton

By Ian Callender

Methodist College are back in the Ulster Bank Schools' Cup final after a comprehensive 107-run victory over Foyle College yesterday.

But their opponents in Friday's decider will not be known until tomorrow after the RBAI-BRA clash at Osborne Park was rained off yesterday. The venue remains the same, with an 11.30am start, for the third attempt to play the semi-final.

James Hunter led the holders' charge into the final with 86 of his school's 186-6. The Instonians all-rounder hit seven fours and three sixes and shared a stand of 121 for the fifth wicket with Adam Reid, who hit five fours and two sixes in his half-century - quite the recovery after they were eight for three.

Foyle were let down by their fielding, with Hunter missed three times before he had reached 50 with Cameron Knight the unlucky bowler on the first two occasions. He was still the stand-out bowler with figures of 1-14 from his six overs.

The Foyle reply never got going and three wickets apiece for Rafai Yousef and Matthew Humphreys reduced them to 55 for eight.

Meanwhile, Cricket Ireland have confirmed that Aaron Hamilton is leaving his post as head coach of the Ireland women's team.

After a review of last year's T20 World Cup in Guyana - Ireland lost all four games by nine wickets, 38 runs, 52 runs and eight wickets - both sides agreed to end his contract

The Australian said: "My thanks to Cricket Ireland for the opportunity it gave me, and to a talented and eager group of players that will no doubt grow further and compete with the best in years to come.

"There is no shying away from the fact that Irish women's cricket is a few years behind the major sides in development, but there is no reason that - with the right support and investment - the Ireland women's team can become a competitive force in the sport."

In the NCU, following the wash-out of last Saturday's Gallagher Challenge Cup quarter-finals, all four will be played on semi-finals day, Saturday, June 29, with the league programme that day moved back 24 hours.

With Ireland players selected for the first one-day international against Zimbabwe at Bready on July 1 unavailable on the Sunday, NCU officials last night decided that clubs would rather miss their internationals in a league fixture rather than a cup semi-final.

A new date for the semi-finals will be confirmed in due course.

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