U13s reach All Ireland Final

The 13s took a step closer to retaining the All Ireland Cup with a 10 run win over a strong Pembroke side. With showers forecast, it was an early departure for an 11.00am start at the fantastic Pembroke Cricket Club. Regulations had been consulted. DLS and a potential bowl-out were looming.


Tom called correctly and chose to bat first. After a decent start by George and Amy, the first wicket fell on 19 when George was clean bowled. Tom and Amy accelerated the scoring before Tom played a loose shot. Ben McCausland and Amy kept the pressure on the Pembroke bowlers, with Amy targeting the leg side boundary, striking the ball cleanly before she too fell to the Pembroke spinner Safi. With the score on 80 for 3 from 10 overs and plenty of batting to come, a big score looked likely. As often happens, one wicket brings two and Ben fell to a run out taking a risky second run. This changed the complexion of the innings and Pembroke had their tails up. The remaining batsmen struggled for fluency but important contributions from Michael Hollway and Luke Beattie meant that the score reached 124. A competitive total, however it would take a big effort from bowlers and fielders to defend with a short leg-side boundary.

The Pembroke reply started at a run-a-ball with Safi looking particularly threatening. After an inconsistent spell, Max claimed the wicket of Ethan Clarke. Daniel Henry at the other end contained the scoring well. This brought skipper Macdara Cosgrove to the wicket at 31 for 1 from 5 overs. Lorcan Donnelly was introduced to the attack and started well. Tom’s first over brought the needed breakthrough as he clean bowled Safi to leave the score on 49 for 2 after 9. The game was delicately poised and it was clear that tactics and containing boundaries on the clubhouse side would either win or lose the game. With Lorcan claiming two wickets in his final over, 76 for 4 after 13 meant it was game on! Pembroke required 49 from 7 overs.

Tom introduced the reliable Michael Hollway into the attack and a “fill-in over from George Palmer worked well.

With the pressure mounting on the batsmen, they struggled to score boundaries. Some tight fielding added to the pressure as Tom returned to the attack. He and Michael bowled tightly and were well supported by a determined fielding unit.

With three overs remaining, twenty six runs were required with Macdara still in. He had struggled for fluency as the Inst side had protected his scoring zones. Macdara tried to use his feet to Michael on the first ball of the eighteenth over and lost his middle stump, much to the delight of the fielding side. The remaining batsmen were choked by some quality bowling as the innings closed on 114 for 8 with Michael claiming another two wickets.

Overall a below par batting performance for the Instonians side however top efforts from Amy and Ben were key. The fielding was excellent and the bowling was good at the key stages of the game.

Thanks to Pembroke for a cracking game and excellent hospitality and to the umpires Peter and Martin.

Instonians 124-7 (A Hunter 41, B McCausland 32, A Safi 3-25, D Tucker 2-19)

Pembroke 114-8 (A Safi 30, M Cosgrove 28, L Donnelly 2-25, M Hollway 3-19)