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Saturday 22nd July 2017
Gardiner Bros. Premier League: North Down v CSNI Sat. 22nd July
CSNI chose to bat first on a typically fine North Down wicket but former CSNI captain, Andrew Cowden, was very well caught behind the wicket by Jay Hunter with 18 the total. Worse was to follow for the visitors as the talented James Kennedy was caught by Peter Eakin at cover. The required partnership came from James McKinney and Mansoor Amjad but it was a painfully slow show mustering the 75 runs. Peter Eakin removed McKinney after his 90 ball 28 with a caught and bowled and top scorer Amjad took 126 balls for his 40 before Stuart Nelson took a good catch at point. Graeme McCarter threatened but his swing at Carl Robinson’s delivery ended up in Hunter’s gloves with Aaron Wright scoring an unorthodox 16 as the overs ran out.
North Down opening bowler, Peter Davison (PICTURED), goes from strength to strength, turning in a fine 10 over spell including 2 maidens and the wickets of the openers. His opening partner Ruan Pretorius was very aggressive and mean, conceding only 22 runs in his 8 overs. Captain Marty Moreland was also miserly with his runs conceded, bowling his 9 overs for a mere 20. One wicket each for Carl Robinson and Peter Eakin rounded off a fine bowling display somewhat tarnished by dropped catches and sloppy ground fielding. The first innings of 135 for 5 had been rain interrupted and Duckworth Lewis produced a 149 target in 34 overs for the home side.
Easy! Not so, as a fired up early spell from McCarter caused havoc, removing the North Down openers, Danny Graham, caught behind and Nathan Burns comprehensively bowled. He also caused concern to our two inform batters, Ali Shields and Ruan Pretorius and it was with some relief that no more damage was done in his limited 7 overs, where he bowled a maiden and took two wickets for 16 runs. No other bowler caused trouble but the North Down batsmen contrived to make this a close enough encounter with an array of mediocre shots. Shields scored a fine 63 and was adjudged lbw, while unusually, Pretorius found the bottom instead of the middle of his bat and presented a soft catch at cover. The work relation promotion of Jay Hunter added 8 runs in 12 balls and Eakin was caught on the square leg boundary attempting to finish the game early. Experienced veteran, Neil Russell prevented any panic and crafted 15 runs not out to ensure the win and top spot in the league.