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Cork Cricket Club

Cork County ease past Merrion 2 at the Mardyke

Cork County took on Merrion 2 at the Mardyke on Saturday July 12th. Conditions were overcast and humid as Ross Durity won the toss and asked Merrion to have a bat. Andy Wootton opened up from the River End and picked up a wicket with the last ball of his first over, Kade Beasley nicking to Morne Bauer at slip.

Wootton’s second over was also successful, Allwright (7) skying to Stephan Grobler at mid-off. Despite a quick fifteen run partnership between Watkins and Blakeney, County always looked like taking another early wicket and it was no surprise when the former was caught at cover by Tim Clifford, Wootton picking up his third wicket.

24-3 became 46-4 when Blakeney attempted to drop and run but was run out by a direct hit from Andy Wootton. After an economical opening spell from Anthony O’Reilly, Stephan Grobler took over from the University End and had early success bowling Parkinson for 1.

Merrion were now 52-5 after 22 overs and things soon got worse for the visitors, when Tice was caught behind off Grobler. Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals, first O’Brien and then Sharma trapped in front by Grobler.

A determined defensive effort by Neville was punctuated by a leg-glanced four before he was dropped by Tim Clifford at mid-off. The mistake however was not compounded, as Neville was well snaffled by Robert Duggan at mid-on eight balls later to leave Merrion nine down. The tenth wicket partnership did not last long as Anthony O’Reilly picked up his second wicket of the day, Ensor caught by Chris Banon at mid-wicket.

Stephan Grobler drives through the covers for Cork County

Cork County had succeeded in restricting their visitors to less than 100 and despite requiring just 93 for victory, openers Ross Durity and Stephan Grobler took a careful, measured approach to the run chase.

Aided by some early wides, the County batsmen had moved the score to 49-0 from 11 overs when tea was taken. Ross Durity departed soon after tea, caught by Blakeney off the bowling of Bridge for 27 out of 58. Morne Bauer joined Grobler at the crease and despite some good bowling from Ensor, Sharma and Bridge, County reached the victory target in the 19th over, Grobler finishing on 43*.

An excellent bowling performance with particularly good contributions from Wootton, Grobler and O’Reilly was compounded by a steady batting performance which puts County level on points with Malahide at the summit of the RSA Division 2 league table.

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