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Interpro washout won't be shelved

By Ian Callender

The postponed RSA interprovincial Cup game between North West Warriors and the Northern Knights, scheduled for Coleraine on Sunday, may be rearranged.

Although there is no provision for any of the games in the expanded interpro series to be replayed, because it is still so early in the season, Cricket Ireland have agreed that if there is an obvious window in the next few months, a new date will be set to ensure another game of 'best against best.'

There was big hopes that the game would go ahead yesterday because of the dry forecast but no-one expected the quantity of rain that fell on Saturday and, following an inspection on Saturday night, the Coleraine club had no option but to call off the game with the ground and square under water – and no chance of it drying up for any hope of a game yesterday.

The Knights had been forced to make two changes for the game with James Shannon not available because of a law exam today and Waringstown's James Hall also pulled out and, indeed, has withdrawn from the rest of the representative season for personal reasons.

Brought into the team on the back of his good start to the season was Johnny Terrett, the North Down opening batsman and Greg Thompson, the Waringstown all-rounder who made 14 appearances for Ireland from 2004-08.

Presumably, if they maintain their early season form, one of them will be in pole position for the Knights' next scheduled one-day game, the return against the Warriors, at Comber on July 15.

Before then, the Warriors travel to Dublin on Saturday week for the one-day game against the Leinster Lightning and the following week, from June 4-6, will meet the Knights in the Championship game at Eglinton.

The first of the Twenty20 days, when each team will play twice, is scheduled for Dublin on June 21, the weekend before the NCU face Leinster at College Park in another midweek three-day game.

Pakistan's final game before they fly into Dublin this afternoon for the first one-day international against Ireland on Thursday was a wash-out. The game against Scotland at the Grange was abandoned in mid-afternoon without a ball bowled because of a waterlogged outfield.

Paul Stirling, Tim Murtagh and Gary Wilson were all in action in the Yorkshire Bank 40 competition yesterday, the final match action for the Ireland internationals ahead of the ODI.

Paul Stirling enjoyed himself with the bat, hitting a run-a-ball 28 at first wicket down for Middlesex, but it was not such a good day for team-mate Murtagh and Wilson at Surrey.

Murtagh was out for a second-ball duck and then bowled eight overs for 53, with a solitary wicket as Somerset chased down Middlesex's total of 252 for nine for the loss of just four wickets with 25 balls to spare. Stirling, mysteriously, bowled one over for two runs and was taken out of the attack.

Wilson has been in great form for his county this season but after a three-ball duck in Saturday's championship game against Nottinghamshire, yesterday he was out second ball in the one-day game against Lancashire which the Red Rose county won by seven runs.

There was still no place in the Somerset team for George Dockrell who has been restricted to 2nd XI cricket with a finger injury but he is expected to be fit to play a full part at Clontarf this week.

The Ireland players have their first training session at Malahide tomorrow afternoon with the other to follow on Wednesday morning ahead of the pre-match Press conferences.

Belfast Telegraph


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