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Muckamore facing tough challenge


By Ian Callender

Muckamore face the biggest test of their early season form when Waringstown visit Moylena in the most attractive match in the first round of the AJG Challenge Cup tomorrow.

Four wins out of five - their defeat by one wicket on the opening day - sends last year's Section One champions, the story of the season so far, into the tie in great heart and fancying their chances of a Cup upset.

But holders Civil Service North will start their defence at Carrickfergus with a new captain after Andrew Cowden stepped down this week, citing family reasons and time constraints.

A record of played four lost four this season undoubtedly also played a part and if they bow out of the Cup today, it promises to be a hard struggle to keep their place in the Premier League. Graeme McCarter is the new skipper, with James Kennedy named as his vice-captain.

Meanwhile, it's Twenty20 weekend in the North West with all the teams playing at least twice over the next three days before the final round of group games on Tuesday night.

Fixtures - Tonight: Lagan Valley Steels Twenty20 Cup (6.15pm): Civil Service North v Lisburn, Instonians v Muckamore, North Down v Carrickfergus, Waringstown v CIYMS.

North West T20 Cup (6.30pm): Bready v Donemana, Fox Lodge v Brigade, Ballyspallen v Newbuildings, Bonds Glen v Killyclooney.

Tomorrow (1pm) AJG Challenge Cup first round: Bangor v North Down, Carrickfergus v Civil Service North, Donaghcloney Mill v CIYMS, Downpatrick v Lurgan (12pm), Holywood v Woodvale, Instonians v Derriaghy, Muckamore v Waringstown (12pm).

GMcG Junior Cup first round: Victoria v Larne Il, Service North II v Ards, Waringstown II v Cooke Collegians, Monaghan v Cregagh, Dunmurry v Newforge, Laurelvale v Lisburn II, Instonians II v Waringstown III, Ballymena v Muckamore II.

North West T20 Cup: Drummond v Bready, Ardmore v Coleraine, Newbuildings v St Johnston, Killyclooney v Burndennett. (4.30pm): Drummond v Eglinton, Ardmore v Fox Lodge, Newbuildings v Strabane, Killyclooney v Glendermott.

Sunday: Eglinton v Donemana, Coleraine v Brigade, Strabane v Ballyspallen, Glendermott v Bonds Glen. (4.30pm): Eglinton v Bready, Coleraine v Fox Lodge, Strabane v St Johnson, Glendermott v Burndennett.

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