Donaghadee v Ards Cricket Club 1st XI on Sat 22 Aug 2015 at 12.00
Ards Cricket Club Lost by 4 wickets

Match report Ards 1st XI travelled to near neighbours Donaghadee, fresh from a poor home performance last week against Newforge, and looking to even up the honours with a high-flying ‘Dee side which had already beaten them at Londonderry Park earlier in the summer. They came away with a four wicket defeat in a much better performance, which showed fight and application, despite yet again being without the majority of their first-choice bowling attack.

On losing the toss, Ards found themselves put into bat on a dry but soft pitch. Yet another opening partnership, this time of Captain Conor Sims and Gary Niblock sought to set the tone for the Ards innings. Unfortunately, after hitting three boundaries Sims holed out to deep mid-on, victim of the slow pitch, with the first wicket falling at 19. Niblock (1) fell at 30 and a quickfire 18 from Roberts left Ards under the cosh at 49-3 off 11 overs. Gary Stewart who was starting to open his shoulders, and the recalled Ian Farley (13), put on 30 runs as they consolidated the innings, taking advantage of some lives offered by the ‘Dee fielders, until Farley too was caught. Stewart was next to go for 32, followed by Fitzsimmons (9) and Devlin (1), leaving Hulbert and Crawford to rebuild the innings which they did successfully putting on 30 runs. Both unfortunately fell in the quick chase for runs, as the overs ran out, with Ards being bowled out for 142 in the last over. For the ’Dee opening bowler Ferris took 3-24 and young Warren Martin 3-18 with his leg-spin which proved hard for all the batsmen to get away. At least, from an Ards point of view, it was a competitive total to defend.

The ’Dee innings got off to a bad start with Francis taking the first wicket in only the second over. The Ards captain had opened the bowling with the experienced seamer Devlin, and young off-spinner Francis, in an effort to take quick wickets, and it looked as if the tactic would pay off. Indeed Devlin’s opening spell of six overs saw him take 2-12 as the ’Dee batsmen struggled to get him away. Whilst wickets were falling at the other end Michael Martin was dispatching virtually every bad ball to the boundary. Six of his first dozen scoring shots were boundaries and when Roberts came on to bowl he went berserk hitting him for 18 which included two huge sixes. At the end of the twelfth over the ’Dee were 43-3, a similar total to Ards, but the difference came with the middle order players who batted around Martin. Younger brother Ross (18) and captain McCloskey (35 no) gave Martin excellent support as the Ards bowlers started to struggle with the increasingly wet ball. Sims bowled well without much luck, but it was the introduction of Hulbert to the attack that saw Ards take two wickets in his first over, inducing a little excitement in ’Dee ranks, and hope in the Ards men. It was extinguished however, despite the dismissal of Martin for an excellent 74, as the ’Dee surged over the winning line in the 30th over. For Ards, Devlin was excellent without much luck, taking 2-16 off his 8 overs. Both spinners found the ball hard to grip and Sims passed the edge on a regular basis. As so often in the past, crucial catches were dropped, particularly off Martin, but the ’Dee were worth their victory. From an Ards point of view, young Harry Jackson kept very well in difficult conditions, and the XI was a lot more competitive in this game than against Newforge. 2015 has been a hard season and this was probably the last match, with the Monaghan fixture unlikely to be rearranged.

Ards Cricket Club 1st XI Batting
Player Name RunsMB4s6sSRCtStRo
1nb 11w 6b  
for 10 wickets

(39.4 overs)
Conor Sims ct Ferris 12
Gary Niblock b R. Martin 1
Garry Stewart ct W. Martin 32
Owen Roberts ct McCloskey 18
Ian Farley ct W. Martin 13
Richard Fitzsimmons b Ferris 9
Matt Hulbert ct McCloskey 19
Peter Devlin b Ferris 1
Conn Crawford ct W. Martin 14
Harry Jackson ct McLawrence 0
Sean Francis Not Out  4

Donaghadee Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
R. Martin8.0124124.003.00
C. Ferris8.002538.333.12
G. Fraser8.003800.004.75
G. McCloskey8.0127213.503.38
W. Martin7.021836.002.57
A. McLAwrence0.40414.006.00

Donaghadee Batting
Player name RMB4s6sSR
7w 1b 2lb 
for 6 wickets
147 (30.0 overs)
M. Martin b Matt Hulbert 74
S. Savage ct Sean Francis 0
N. Spiers b Peter Devlin 3
G. Fraser ct Peter Devlin 4
R. Martin lbw Conor Sims 18
G. McCloskey Not Out  35
A. McLawrence lbw Matt Hulbert 0
F. Gilroy Not Out  0
W. Martin  
C. Ferris  
A N Other  

Ards Cricket Club 1st XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Peter Devlin8.031628.002.00
Sean Francis6.0042142.007.00
Conor Sims8.0132132.004.00
Owen Roberts1.001800.0018.00
Garry Stewart5.003000.006.00
Matt Hulbert2.01723.503.50