Weekend Review: 30th / 31st July
Carrick beat leaders Instonians
Third placed Carrickfergus kept themselves just behind leading pair Instonians and Waringstown in the Ulster Bank Premier League when they had what in the end was a very comfortable 62 run victory over Instonians at Middle Road on Saturday.
The visitors won the toss and after the rain during the week, asked Carrick to bat first, and after losing an early wicket, it was the Michael Gilmour show for 15 overs. The Carrick opener batted superbly scoring 56 runs in 53 balls with six 4’s and two sixes, and when he was out he had laid the platform for a good total with the home side on 72 after 16 overs. Jamie Holmes and Pat Botha saw the score past the hundred mark before Homes was caught behind, and replaced by Alex Haggan. The pair featured in the most productive partnership of the innings, adding a further 81 runs in 17 overs, before both were dismissed in consecutive overs with the score on 190. Botha top scored with 65 off 85 deliveries with seven boundaries, while Haggan supported him well with an invaluable 34. With six overs remaining Ryan Eagleson shared in partnerships with Jack Burton and then Michael Armstrong, which saw a further 58 runs come off the last 7 overs to give Carrick an imposing total of 248 for 7 at the end of their 50 overs.
Skipper Nicholai Smith and James Shannon got the Inst reply off to the ideal start, sharing a 50 run opening stand in just 11 overs. Michael Armstrong then had Shannon caught behind for 27, and Pat Botha struck with the wickets of White and Theron to reduce them to 60 for 3. After Ryan Eagleson chipped in with a further wicket, Smith found a willing ally in Stephen Bunting, and the pair added 87 in the following 17 overs to put their side right back in the game. Eagleson then trapped Bunting lbw for 40, and when Alex Haggan had the instonians skipper caught in the deep by Botha for 72, the game was over as a contest. Carrick’s former Irish international snapped up three further wickets to complete his second five wicket haul of the season, and he currently leads the way in the Premier League wicket takers with 31 scalps. Another fine victory means that Iain Parkhill’s men now sit in clear 3rd place, just two wins behind the leading pair, and two clear of the rest.