Lightning's title defence takes blow after defeat to Warriors
LEINSTER LIGHTNING'S hopes of retaining the NewsTalk FM InterPro T20 title took a knock in Tyrone yesterday as the North-West Warriors inflicted a thumping 30-run D/L defeat on the 2013 champions.
David Rankin, the younger brother of Ireland and England pace bowler Boyd, top scored with 62 on his home ground at Bready and international all-rounder Stuart Thompson smashed 60 as the Warriors posted a daunting 161-3 from 20 overs.
After rain, Lightning's target was revised to 141 from 16 overs but the visitors slipped to 26-5 and never threatened despite Pembroke's Barry McCarthy making a breezy 34 from 24 balls and Max Sorensen hitting two sixes in his 22. Lightning were all out for 110 in 15.3 overs.
Malahide remain on course to become the first Division Two side to win the Senior Cup for nine years, but they will have to beat Irish Cup holders Clontarf in the all-Northside decider at The Vineyard on Saturday week.
Ironically, the last side from outside the top flight to win the 60-over competition were The Hills, the team Malahide defeated in Saturday's semi-final by the emphatic margin of 65 runs.
Fintan McAllister continued where he left off in last week's inter-provincial for Lightning with 106 in the Villagers' 245 for eight, a total bloated by 37 wides. There was only one meaningful partnership in the innings with captain Callum Riches scoring 77 of the massive 225 runs stand for the fourth wicket.
The most telling part of the match, however, was the fall of wickets. In the space of five balls, Reinhardt Strydom dismissed Max Sorensen and Naseer Shoukat, both for ducks, to reduce the defending league champions to 54 for five. After that, Malahide were in total control, Strydom finishing with four for 23.
Clontarf will be formidable opposition in the final as they continued their impressive cup form with a 67-run rain-affected victory over league leaders Merrion at Anglesea Road.
Merrion hit 232 for eight in their 60 overs with Dom Joyce top scoring with 72 from 75 balls, but although Clontarf faced only 35 overs before rain washed out the match, they were well ahead of the Duckworth/Lewis par score.
Bill Coghlan (89 no) and Mark Collier put on 98 for the first wicket in 22 overs and although Collier and Colin Currie went in quick succession, batsman of the moment Andrew Poynter hit 25 off 30 to take Clontarf to 165 for two when rain arrived. Calculations showed they needed to be only 98 to be awarded a place in their ninth final in the last 12 seasons.
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