Cork Cricket Club

Munster Junior Cup Quarter Final: Midleton 2 v Cork County 2

Cork County Cricket Club crestCork County 2 took on Midleton 2 in the quarter final of the Junior Cup on Saturday 14th of July at Midleton RFC. County captain Niall Tynan won the toss and chose to bat first on the artificial wicket on what was an overcast day in East Cork.

Brad Morgan and Mirza Baig opened the batting for the visitors but the partnership was broken up quickly, Morgan (1) cutting straight to gully in the 3rd over.

Ian Coleman (22) joined Baig at the crease and both settled in well, playing some nice shots but only scoring the very occasional boundary due to the length of the grass on what is very much a rugby pitch.

The introduction of Cliff Sweetnam for Midleton led to a number of chances, Ian Coleman was dropped twice in the same over at short mid off. While both batsmen had been communicating well throughout the innings to this point a mix up between them led to Coleman being run out by half a pitch length.

Tim Clifford (16) and Mirza Baig put on another solid partnership before Clifford departed, Baig reaching his half century during the third wicket stand.

County skipper Niall Tynan came in at five but was given out shortly afterwards when a delivery which looked like it had hit the pad of the right hander was adjudged to have hit his bat and was caught behind.

Kevin Bray joined Baig at the crease with 12 overs remaining and with the score now at 168 the opening batsman began to hit more expansive shots off the bowling of Ken Higgs and Grant Sweetnam bringing up his century in the process to loud applause from his team-mates.

Bray was caught soon after however and Nicky Murphy came in at seven for the visitors and attempted to get Baig on strike as much as possible to continue to flow of runs for County.

The second run-out of the innings ended his spell at the crease and Kevin O’Sullivan(2) followed soon after, stumped off Ken Higgs. Justin McGurk hit a nice boundary over mid-on but was run out three deliveries later.
With just two balls left in the innings Ryan O’Connell joined Mirza Baig who was still at the crease and they managed to get the score to 216-8 off 45 overs, Baig finishing on 113*.

A mixture of patient batting and poor fielding(17 dropped catches in total) allowing Cork County to set a daunting total for the home side.

After the lunch break seamers Justin McGurk(2-13) and Hugh O’Brien(2-11) set to work attacking Midleton’s opening batsmen and McGurk made an early breakthrough leaving Midleton 4-1 off 3 overs.

Good bowling from both ends troubled the Midleton batsmen with O’Brien very unlucky not to get a wicket in his first spell, consistently beating the bat but failing to find the edge.

Leg-spinner Nicky Murphy replaced O’Brien and had the batsmen in all sorts of trouble picking up three quick wickets and leaving Midleton five down after 18 overs.

Meanwhile off-spinner Tim Clifford had replaced McGurk at the other end and while failing to pick up a wicket bowled extremely well making things very difficult for both batsmen.

Following his spell, fellow off-spinner Kevin O’Sullivan(2-12) bowled five overs up the hill, his second wicket leaving Midleton 8 wickets down.

Captain Niall Tynan bowled an accurate short spell of medium pace from the other end but it was Hugh O’Brien who picked up the last two wickets to give Cork County 2 a comprehensive 151 run victory and a place in the semi-final of the Junior Cup against Galway on Sunday 22nd of July with the venue yet to be confirmed.

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