Nelson sails Waringstown to another win
Ian Callender (Sunday Life)
WARINGSTOWN were presented with the Premier League trophy before their penultimate game against Carrickfergus yesterday and they celebrated by winning their 12th match out of 13 this season.
Skipper Lee Nelson received the trophy at 10.30am and just over six hours later had scored his second successive century, a career-best 135 from 107 balls, with 17 fours and four sixes.
Nelson was dismissed by Connor Brown, a replacement for South African professional Jacques Snyman who returned home to get married yesterday, but Waringstown, chasing 270 for victory, were just 30 runs from their target and they still had six wickets and 33 balls to spare when Graham Hume hit the winning run.
Earlier, Brown had scored 79 from 106 balls (eight fours and two sixes) and shared a second-wicket stand of 180 with his friend and former Glamorgan team-mate Jeremy Lawlor, who was finally dismissed at the start of the 49th over after hitting 142, which included 11 fours and eight sixes.
On a day of big scoring on the penultimate Saturday of the Premier League, Ruhan Pretorius topped the charts with 162 not out for Woodvale in their 84-run win over Civil Service North at Stormont.
The South African, who qualifies for Ireland next year, hit 10 sixes and five fours. Just for good measure, he then took five wickets as CSN were bowled out for 239.
Faiz Fazal, the Lisburn professional, squeezed in between Pretorius and Lawlor with 158 not out (14 fours and seven sixes) as the basement side won their third game of the season, beating Instonians by the huge margin of 221 runs.
Fortunately for the Wallace Park side there is no relegation this year and they will be joined in the top flight by Cliftonville Academy and one other, which will be decided today at Gibson Park Avenue when Cregagh host Saintfield.
The Section One League trophy will be in attendance, along with a computer to work out the teams’ run-rate if required, because if Cregagh win it will, incredibly, be a three-way tie at the top of Section One with run-rate to decide if Cregagh or Cliftonville Academy are the champions.
Derriaghy are currently second, on run-rate, despite inflicting only a third defeat of the season on Adam Kelso’s side yesterday. Kelso has also been invited to Cregagh today. Currently, his side are 0.02 runs ahead.
Cregagh went into yesterday’s game at Muckamore knowing they would have to win at least once to gain promotion and twice to have a chance of the title. No pressure then, but with a lot of help from their hosts, they negotiated the first part as they posted 236 for seven — with the help of 31 wides — and then bowled Muckamore for 217. They bowled only 10 wides.
Derriaghy, who won their first 12 games, produced their best performance of the season in scoring 277 against Cliftonville Academy at Queensway and then, crucially, Craig Lewis dismissed Max Burton for a duck, leaving the opening batsman just eight short of 1,000 runs for the season.
Cliftonville Academy were bowled out for 215 in the 45th over, Lewis finishing with five for 34 runs.