Hard fought victory keeps the Seconds in touch at the top


Donaghcloney Seconds came away with a hard fought victory over Academy on Saturday.

With the picturesque Castle Grounds unavailable due to the groundsman going on holidays, a trek to the far end of BRA playing fields at Mallusk, a small pitch and a bland astro turf wicket greeted the visitors.

Thankfully during the toss the captains agreed to reduce the overs as talk had already turned to the trek back to the changing rooms for lunch.

Batting first Donaghcloney got off to a steady start, Max Lyttle doing a good job of rotating strike and holding the innings together with some lovely stroke shots, just missing out on his half century as he finished on 49 from the allotted overs.

His rotation allowed the brawn of older brother Robert to do his best at losing as many of the opposition balls as possible as he dispatched the ball to all corners of the pitch, including dissecting the rugby posts in cow corner for a huge 6 as he raced to 56 off just over 30 balls. A total on 155 from their allotted overs seemed to be a reasonable total.

Despite being exhausted from the trek back to the changing rooms for teas, followed by the trek back to the pitch to play, the villagers set about their task well, keeping Academy just below the required runrate for most of the innings, and managed to bowl Academy out for 151 with just an over remaining.

The result, alongside the shock defeat for Ballymena at Downpatrick, means that the villagers remain level with Ballymena in second, just one win behind Carrickfergus who had no game at the weekend and still in with a shout of promotion to the top tier of the junior game. The Seconds are away to Woodvale Seconds on Saturday.