Lurgan stay on top with win
IT was a great day for the batsmen at Pollock Park on Saturday as Lurgan and Holywood notched up over 600 runs between them in their Ulster Bank Section One league game, with the home side coming out on top by 33 runs.
The sun shone down on what proved to be a belter of a batting strip as Lurgan openers Godbole and McCollum brought up the 50 partnership in the tenth over.
An over later, and the partnership was broken as the introduction of Percell led to the departure of young McCollum, caught by R Adair for 15.
Skipper Stephen Johnston joined the in-form Lurgan professional but an lbw decision saw him depart for five, and Stephen Chambers went was the third home wicket to fall with the score on 88.
His departure brought all rounder John Guy to the crease and along with Godbole they scored steadily to take the town side to 116 for three wickets at the drinks interval.
The short break certainly did the Lurgan duo no harm as they immediately started to attack the Holywood bowling.
Godbole was in scintillating form reaching his fifty in 48 deliveries and dispatching any loose delivery to the boundary including a superb six over the long off boundary.
John Guy was not to be undone and played an excellent supporting role, reaching his own half century in 80 deliveries.
The Lurgan batsmen put on 125 for the fourth wicket before Godbole was out to a stinging catch held by Lynam at square leg, off the bowling of M Adair with the total on 213 in the thirty ninth over.
Niranjan’s 117 runs included 14 boundaries and one six. Steven Anderson joined Guy in the middle and immediately made his intentions known as he quickly notched up a valuable 41 runs in 37 deliveries.
John Guy was eventually dismissed for 67 caught by Best off R Adair, while Michael Sloan played a cameo innings scoring 20 runs off just seven deliveries, three of them maximums, as the Lurgan innings closed on the formidable total of 326 for eight wickets. P Percell had the best bowling figures for the visitors taking four for 55 in his 10 overs.
Any thoughts that Holywood were going to be intimidated by the home sides score and simply roll over were quickly dispelled by the visitor’s batsmen who were determined to show resilience at the crease, while making a concerted effort to chase down the Lurgan total.
Indeed while R Adair and skipper McCormick were at the crease, the scoreboard was ticking over at a rate that was keeping the visitors in the hunt.
With the total edging towards 200 and the Holywood duo starting to get on top of the Lurgan bowling, town skipper Stephen Johnston decided to bring back John Guy for his seventh over.
The Lurgan quickie duly obliged by clipping the top of Adair’s stumps to send the Holywood man back to the hutch for an excellent 69.
His next over saw him remove McCormick, again clean bowled for 55 to put the home side very much in the driving seat.
There was still some spirited batting to come from the visitors with both Lynam (33) and Saville (40) spraying shots around the ground before Guy and Callum Grieve removed both to catches by Stephen Johnston.
A valient effort fell 33 runs short, but excellent entertainment was supplied by both teams.
Lurgan stay top of Section One with four wins out of four.