Coleraine Second XI also experienced mixed fortunes over the weekend as they beat Newbuildings in the league but were defeated at the hands of Donemana in the semi final of the cup.
Coleraine travelled to Newbuildings on Saturday well aware of the good form the home side has produced in recent weeks. It was the home side who took the early initiative, winning the toss and putting Coleraine into bat on what was a wet and seamer friendly wicket. Their decision seemed justified when opening batsmen Wilson Torrens was caught lbw by a peach of a delivery from opening bowler Thompson to leave Coleraine 5 for 1.
Captain Peter Wallace and Brian ‘Alacharachy’ Acheson set about rebuilding the Coleraine innings and looked to have done just that, carrying the away side to 82 for 1 when first Acheson (20) and then Wallace (51) were dismissed in quick succession to leave Coleraine 82 for 3. An outstanding innings from Steven Harper (45), which saw him pepper the straight boundaries and J. D. Muller (24) took Coleraine to a very competitive total of 188 for 9 off their 50 overs.
At the break team manager Nigel Barr reminded the away side that the wicket would be conducive to slow bowling and Coleraine felt confident of defending their total. This confidence was extended when Jarred Barnes took the early wicket of Newbuildings opener Wallace. However, it was Andrew Douglas (4-24) and Rory Knox (2-33) who turned the game in Coleraine’s favour, as Newbuildings slipped from 83 for 3 to 86 for 6. Some late resistance from Chris Cooper wasn’t enough to save the home side as they were bowled out for 138 which saw Coleraine coast to a well deserved victory by 40 runs.
On Sunday Coleraine hosted Donemana in the semi final of the Intermediate A cup. Fresh from their victory against a strong Newbuildings side on the previous day, the home side felt confident of making it three successive cup finals. Having won the toss and electing to bat Donemana were immediately under pressure with Jarred Barnes picking up two early wickets to leave the visitors struggling on 5 for 2.
Britton and McBrine seemed to have set Donemana on the road to recovery when A. Douglas (4-39) and A. Malik (3-28) reduced the away side from 60 for 2 to 63 for 6. With Donemana eventually being dismissed for 127, Coleraine appeared to be very much in the driving seat. Coleraine’s reply, however, got off to an unsure start, as first Wilson Torrens and then Peter Wallace were both unlucky to be given LBW, leaving the home side stuttering on 32 for 3.
The quick wickets of S McCartney and JD Muller only added to Coleraine’s problems as they were reduced to 33 for 6. The batting display continued to be disappointing from Coleraine as they were all bowled out for 65, with G. Boyd finishing with figures of 6 for 4. This was a disappointing result for Coleraine, who had high hopes of cup success this season, however, they should still be proud of their first season’s efforts in Intermediate A to date.
Team manager Nigel Barr said after the game: “We knew it would be a hard game, and it’s disappointing to lose. Having said that, I still maintain that we are a side to be reckoned with and all that.” Despite their cup failure Coleraine should still be planning a major assault on the league as we enter the second half of the season.