Bowler Stephen Hutchinson had a day to remember on Saturday as he collected his first five-wicket haul in senior cricket.
The 20-year-old helped Coleraine to a six-wicket win over Brigade to take top spot in the North West Premiership.
Once the left-arm seamer found his range, he tore into the visitors’ top order who went from 37-0 to 45-5 with Hutchinson (5-30) claiming the lot.
“It’s always a great feeling to win any game, however it’s hard to top the feeling of getting a few big wickets myself in such an important game against a very strong team like Brigade,” he told Times Sport.
“That said, the entire team worked very hard and in particular young Marcus Poskitt carried the batting through.
“It’s still early days yet but we’ve got off to a brilliant start and hopefully it can continue all season. Every player in the team has played their part and it’s great to be a part of it. I’m grateful to the club for giving me the chance to open the bowling this season.”
Hutchinson is clearly reaping the rewards of all his hard work in the close season.
“Being given the chance to play for the firsts at the end of last season I was determined to work on my fitness,” he explained. “I worked with Strength and Conditioning coach Chris Gregg over the winter, and this has paid off. This season I’m feeling really good and enjoying my cricket more than ever.”
Coleraine continued their good form into Sunday’s Irish Senior Cup tie against Waringston, but were left frustrated by the weather in the end.
“We were in a great position on Sunday so it’s really disappointing that the weather put a halt to the game,” said Hutchsinson. “However, we look forward to, and are up for, the replay next week of this All Ireland Cup match. Of course before that we have to focus on the Senior Cup quarter Final on Saturday.”