CRICKET REVIEW: Rain sees Carrick semi-final abandoned

Carrick's Robert Smith and Jamie Holmes claim a run in Saturday's Challenge Cup semi-final against CIYMS. Photo: Press Eye. INLT 27-909-CON
Carrick's Robert Smith and Jamie Holmes claim a run in Saturday's Challenge Cup semi-final against CIYMS. Photo: Press Eye. INLT 27-909-CON

If CIYMS are not playing CSNI in the showpiece final of the Challenge Cup they only have themselves to blame, writes David Holmes.

Against Carrickfergus at a blustery Belmont where showers were the order of the day, the home team failed to score 69 runs off 80 balls with 10 wickets in hand before the match was abandoned.

Challenge Cup semi-final action between CIYMS and Carrickfergus. INLT 27-910-CON

Challenge Cup semi-final action between CIYMS and Carrickfergus. INLT 27-910-CON

Duckworth-Lewis was always going to impact this encounter, where we had a total of six interruptions in all.

CI needed 69 from 21 overs knowing that any further rain would prove critical.

Those who cried foul at delaying tactics employed by Carrickfergus as they clung on for survival should note, this was the same CIYMS side who posted totals of 156, 178 and 169 in 20 overs during the group stages of the Twenty20 competition. A similar positive approach here and this game would have been finished inside 10 overs.

No, it was not pretty to watch, but Carrickfergus have added an edge to their game, a steely determination not to be beaten, even when all seemed lost.

The umpires had no option but to take the players from the field with CI six runs short of securing that final berth.

The ultimate irony was that as a relieved Carrickfergus team left the ground to fight another day, the sun was shining.

Carrick’s saviour was the talismanic Ryan Eagleson, man of the match in the previous round with five wickets.

Five is his number, and he opened the bowling and in his parsimonious five-over spell there were only five scoring shots; 30 deliveries at a cost of eight runs.

John Matchett played 16 dot balls in his nine, and Chris Dougherty played 21 dot balls in his first 28.

Earlier Carrickfergus won the toss and decided to bat but that tactic backfired as Justin Kemp and Johnny Thompson produced a torrid opening spell as they were 16-5 and then 46-7 before leaving CIYMS needing 94 to win in 34 overs but they came up short.

Carrick’s next Premier League match is set to take place on Saturday, July 16 when they entertain North Down.

Meanwhile, the draw has been made for the Minor Qualifying Cup semi-final. Carrickfergus IV take on Lisburn IV for a place in the showpiece while BISC II play SCNI IV. Matches are schedule to be played on July 23.