Cricket: YMCA claim their first ever All-Ireland T20 title

by Stephen Findlater

YMCA claimed their first Clear Currency All-Ireland T20 Cup after a dramatic 29 run win over Donemana at Belmont in Belfast. 

Under warm autumn skies, Donemana skipper William McClintock won the toss and sent YMCA in first. McClintock’s opposite number, Jack Tector was the early aggressor with the bat hitting 62 from 48 balls, including six fours and two sixes. 

The YMCA century came up from 85 balls for the loss of three wickets, but with the score poised at 109-3 in the 16th over the North West side then stepped up the pressure, squeezing the YMCA batters in the last 4 overs through the accurate spin of Jordan McGonigle (2-25), Andy McBrine (2-24) and Dwayne McGerrigle (4-15). YMCA lost 6-22 from the last 25 balls of the innings to finish on a below par 131-9 from 20 overs.   

Needing an early breakthrough, the YMCA bowlers initially came up against a resolute Andy McBrine (4) and Dean Mehaffy (17) who put on 22 in the first five overs without loss. 

After both openers then fell within the over following, that brought twin brothers Gary and William McClintock together. The pair put on 64 at a run-a-ball and set Donemana up for what seemed an achievable victory. 

With the score on 88-2 in the 15th over, Jack Tector brought back Curtis Campher who removed both McClintock’s in the space of three balls. From there Donemana collapsed, losing 7-14 as the YMCA bowlers – backed by brilliant fielding – finished Donemana’s hopes. 

In the end, it was a comfortable 29-run win to YMCA, but the match definitely turned on fine margins. Jack Tector was named Player of the Match. 

A day later, however, YM missed out on a first ever place in the European Cricket League when they fell to CIYMS by 15 runs. 

CIYMS finished on what was considered a below par score of 110-6 from their 20 overs before YM’s chase started in disastrous fashion with YMCA captain Jack Tector and his brother Harry both falling cheaply. 

 At 3-2, a rebuild was needed. Singh and Campher added 26 for the third wicket before the former picked out Jacob Mulder at long-on to leave YMCA on 29-3. 

 41-3 was the score at the halfway mark, with 70 still needed. CIYMS spinner James Cameron-Dow (4-10), Trevor Britton (1-14) and Mulder (0-14) put on the squeeze to swing momentum. 

 Jones (2-14) then made it 52-4 in the 12th over, removing Tim Tector for 11. Campher was now the anchor as YMCA needed to up the run-rate, however when he fell for 19 later in the over, CIYMS’ belief grew of a low-scoring win. 

When Cameron-Dow picked up CIYMS’ sixth wicket, bowling Bobby Gamble for 17, YMCA still were in the hunt with an achievable 24 off 17 deliveries required. 

But CIYMS held their nerve, and in the last over Cameron-Dow claimed a remarkable hat-trick of wickets including Tom Anders, Rory Anders and Mikey O’Reilly to seal the 15-run win. 

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