Ards Cricket Club Under 15 XI and Graham Cup team v Saintfield on Wed 29 Jun 2011 at 6.30pm
Ards Cricket Club Lost by 78 runs

Match report Newly crowned Graham Cup winners, Saintfield, were the U15's opposition in their latest league fixture played at Comber Rd. Saintfield batted first and started well scoring at a run a ball. Both openers, Stewart and Hamill, were finding the boundary with regularity aided by some poor deliveries from the Ards bowlers. The score had reached 41 in the 7th over when Ards got the breakthrough with Stewart (25 including 4 boundaries) playing on to a full delivery from Ross Martin. Saintfield captain, Ryan Smith, came to the wicket and quickly showed his undoubted class stroking the ball to all parts of the ground (despite the long grass and damp outfield) and, with Hamill, put together a century partnership before he was bowled by a very good leg break from Warren Martin for 38 (including 4 6's) with the score on 143. Hamill, who was quick to capitalise on anything short or down the legside and, perhaps surprisingly, outscored his more illustrious partner, fell soon after, well caught by Robbie Ingham off Adam Curry, for a very good knock of 72 that included 10 boundaries. McCavera (7no) and Mitchell (5no) batted out the final couple of overs to take the Saintfield total to an imposing 158 after 20 overs.

Facing such a daunting total, Ards were realistic about the challenge that lay ahead and the first objective was to achieve respectability in the run chase. But things didn't start well when Ross Martin (2) ran himself out, Adam Curry (1) was bowled by McCaughtry and Owen Roberts (9) was caught off Reid to leave the score 16 for 3 after 3 overs. But Russell Hughes and Warren Martin, who had top scored the previous week against Saintfield's Development U15 Squad, again showed the way, helped by some sloppy fielding by Saintfield, to take the score to 50 when Hughes (who perhaps should be nicknamed the Cat due to the number of lives he had in his innings!!), was bowled by Gibson for 15 (including 2 boundaries). Crooks and Martin then took the score to 68 before Crooks (4) was bowled by Saintfield pace bowler, McCavera. Graham Cairns (3) followed soon after stumped off McCaughtry who took 2 wickets and along with Telford bowled 8 very economical overs of spin from which only 13 runs were conceded again showing how effective good slow bowling can be at this level. The Ards innings concluded on 80 which included 24 extras with Taylor Nutt 2 not out but special mention must go to U13's player, Warren Martin, for his innings of 18no in which he showed excellent technique, temperament and bravery against Saintfield's strong bowling attack.

This goes down as an honourable loss by this young Ards team who battled hard against arguably the strongest team in the NCU at this age group. While there was no lack of effort on their part, the Ards bowlers will hopefully have learnt that better quality batsmen will usually punish severely any loose, especially short, deliveries and they will look to bowl fuller and straighter in future games. Warren Martin and Russell Hughes again were the pick of the batsmen and hopefully others will provide them with better support as the season proceeds. Although there was some good fielding, especially by Graham Cairns, Ards must maintain better levels of concentration in the field and always be alert and ready to take any catching and run out opportunities that present themselves.

On a lighter note and much to the amusement of his fellow teammates, Saintfield player Mitchell comfortably wins the 'Comedy Award' of the night after unsuccessfully trying to catch the ball at mid off with his forehead - a refresh of the ECB coaching manual on catching might be in order!

Saintfield Batting
Player name RunsMB4s6sSR
for 3 wickets
158 (0.0 overs)
P Stewart b  R Martin 25
M Hamill ct  A Curry 72
R Smith b  W Martin 38
T McCavera Not Out  7
A Mitchell Not Out  5
T McCaughtry  
J Reid  
P Telford  
C Gibson  

Ards Cricket Club Under 15 XI and Graham Cup team Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Ross Martin4.0021121.005.25
Joel Ferguson4.012500.006.25
Owen Roberts4.003300.008.25
Conor Balfour2.002400.0012.00
Adam Curry4.0036136.009.00
Warren Martin2.0014114.007.00

Ards Cricket Club Under 15 XI and Graham Cup team Batting
Player Name RMB4s6sSRCatchesStumpingsRun outs
for 6 wickets

(0.0 overs)
Ross Martin Run out  2
Owen Roberts ct  Reid 9
Adam Curry b  McCaughtry 1
Russell Hughes b  Gibson 15
Warren Martin Not Out  18
Michael Crooks b  McCavera 4
Graham Cairns st  McCaughtry 3
Conn Crawford Not Out  2
Taylor Nutt  
Robbie Ingham  
Conor Balfour  

Saintfield Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
T McCaughtry4.00723.501.75
J Reid4.0027127.006.75
P Telford4.00600.001.50
T McCavera4.0017117.004.25
C Gibson4.0015115.003.75