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Semi-final task a daunting one but Portrush are all fired up: McClure



Relishing it: Ian McClure can’t wait to take on Belmont

Relishing it: Ian McClure can’t wait to take on Belmont

Relishing it: Ian McClure can’t wait to take on Belmont

Portrush's Ian McClure insists his team are relishing an IBA Senior Cup semi-final against high-flying Belmont after their thrilling victory over rivals Ballymoney at the weekend.

It was sweet revenge for the Ramore Head boys because only 48 hours earlier, they were dumped out of the Provincial Bowling Association's Piggott Cup by the same opponents.

They arrived at Church Street on a mission and emerged triumphant by five shots.

"It's going to be a tough semi-final but when it gets down to the final four nothing is easy," said McClure. "It was a great win against Ballymoney, a real team effort. But we must do it all over again. Belmont are a side steeped in IBA Senior Cup tradition.

"They've won it on numerous occasions, so it's going to be a daunting challenge. But anything can happen in a one-off game."

Eddie Curran's 26-7 rink win against Brian Smyth tilted the tie in favour of the visitors. McClure also chipped in with a 16-13 victory over Brian McAlary.

Ballymoney hit back through Willie McCaw and Alistair Steele, who defeated Gary McCloy (22-15) and Simon Colvin (28-18).

Belmont marched into the semi-finals with a 23-shot home win over Old Bleach.

Irish Bowling Association Senior Cup, quarter-finals: Belmont 93 Old Bleach 70, Banbridge 90 Pickie 68, Ballymoney 70 Portrush 75, CYM 75 Whitehead 73

Irish Bowling Association Intermediate Cup, quarter-finals: Belmont B 101 Markethill 41, Ballywalter 96 CI-Knock 60, Willowfield 90 City of Derry 52, BETS 79 Forth River 65.

Irish Bowling Association Junior Cup quarter-finals: Ballymoney B 85 Cookstown B 62, Dunbarton B 78 CYM B 77, Greenhills 70 Whitehead B 50, Mossley B 51 Coleraine B 95.

Northern Ireland Private Greens League Division One: Salisbury 81 (2) Ewarts 90 (5), Larne 104 (7) Ballymena B 47 (1).

Northern Ireland Bowling Association Division One: Bangor 115 (7) Lurgan 52 (0), Londonderry Park 68 (1) Donaghadee 85 (6).

Northern Ireland Provincial Bowling Association: Dunluce 109 (6) Letterkenny 66 (1).

Belfast Telegraph