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Knights not fighting fit as Lightning near crown

By Staff Reporter

Leinster Lightning have played only two matches but are already within touching distance of retaining the inter-provincial cup.

Victory at The Lawn in next Sunday's return match against Northern Knights, who were hammered by 158 runs at Anglesea Road yesterday, will seal another title triumph and on yesterday's showing there is little that the NCU side can do to stop it, even with home advantage.

Their first mission will be to cut down on the number of extras. A record 62 were conceded, including an unacceptable 39 wides as Lightning piled up 320. It could have been worse but, among the extras, the Knights did at least pick up wickets and they took all 10, albeit in 49.5 overs.

John Anderson, still on the periphery of the Ireland squad, top scored with 76 but it was the impetus of current T20 international Tyrone Kane which, if there was any doubt, took the game away from the Knights.

He hit 57 from 33 balls with five fours and four sixes, batting at No 8 while Dom Joyce, after 10 years in the representative wilderness, was a Lightning star again with 36 from 35 balls.

The Knights' bowling stars were harder to find. Phil Eaglestone started well enough but his two attempts at a comeback were hit for 11 and 15 runs respectively.

Opening partner Mark Adair bowled seven of the 16 wides but when he bowled straight, the Warwickshire player caused problems and he claimed the scalp of Kevin O'Brien.

James Cameron-Dow did not have the same success as in the cup final. Less than 24 hours after taking four for 17 in nine overs against Instonians, he was hit for 21 from his first two overs and ended up with one for 65 from 10.

Shane Getkate was the most successful bowler (4-48).

Only White made a significant contribution in the Knights' reply with 57 from 84 balls but wickets were falling all round him, including Rassie van der Dussen. After that it was all downhill.

Scores: Leinster Lightning 320 (J Anderson 76, T Kane 57, D Joyce 36, J Mooney 30; S Getkate 4-48, M Adair 2-44, P Eakin 2-64) Northern Knights 162 (33.5 overs, A White 57, M Adair 22, R van der Dussen 21; E Richardson 3-26, J Mooney 2-13, J Anderson 2-17). Lightning won by 158 runs.

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