Richard Clarke became the first Lurgan captain to lift the Intermediate Cup as Lurgan Seconds defeated Bangor Seconds by seven wickets in an entertaining cup final at Pollock Park on Saturday.
In a good all round team performance, Peter Maxwell took the Man of the Match award primarily for an excellent 67 not out, scored at a time when Bangor threatened to seize control of the game.
It was Bangor who batted first on a hard track and they were soon in trouble. Opening batsman Mark English nicked a delivery from Jack Harrison in the second over and was caught behind by Davy Haire.
The combination of Harrison and Peter Maxwell had the visitors reeling on 18 for three and the Lurgan bowlers continued to keep the pressure on the batsmen. Neil Allen claimed the fourth wicket thanks to an excellent leg side stumping by Davy Haire and Jonny Hunter took wicket number five.
Graeme Hunter then entered proceedings and took the next three wickets to reduce Bangor to 102 for eight. However, Bangor’s Garrett capitalised on being dropped by scoring an undefeated 44 runs to take Bangor up to a challenging 166 for nine in their 40 overs. Graeme Hunter took three for 34, Jack Harrison two for 33 and Jonny Hunter two for 36. The Lurgan reply got off to a hesitant start, hesitant being the appropriate word as Jack Harrison hesitated to a call for a single from Graeme Hunter and the Lurgan opener was run out for one with the score on 10.
Hunter however was looking comfortable and he and Neil Kilpatrick took the score to 43 before Neil was clean bowled.
Peter Maxwell was next to the middle and the Town side had 50 runs on the board in 10 overs. Maxwell and Hunter were initially being restricted to ones and twos by the Bangor attack and the pressure finally told as the in form Hunter was adjudged lbw attempting to play a sweep shot and departed for 35 with the total on 62.
The Bangor players believed they had claimed a vital wicket and continued to bowl tightly. However Town skipper Richard Clarke along with Maxwell, gradually began to up the tempo and soon the runs began to flow. No further wickets fell as the duo put on a century stand for the fourth wicket to steer Lurgan to their first Intermediate Cup success in the history of the club with five overs to spare.
Clarke played an excellent supporting role to Peter Maxwell, being undefeated on 31 not out while Peter Maxwell’s 67no included two sixes. So cup success for the Seconds who will be hoping to maintain their unbeaten run this season as they chase a league and cup double.