Bready and Fox Lodge start new Women’s League with wins

A packed summer of women and girls cricket started in earnest on Monday night as the domestic senior league got underway with wins for both Bready and Fox Lodge.

Five teams will contest the senior competition this season while there will also be a Championship league played mostly on Wednesday nights aimed at developing more players and teams to bolster the top division.

Champions Bready started 2022 where they left off last season as they beat Coleraine by six wickets at Magheramason on opening night.

The Bannsiders were a bit of a surprise package in their debut season and hopes are high that they can improve again for the experience. They were however caught a bit cold in this one, and were bowled out for just 38.

Vanessa Buchanan (3-2) and Charley Scott (2-0) did the bulk of the damage with the ball for the hosts, however it wasn’t all plain sailing for them in reply to the modest target.

Jemma Rankin (15*) and skipper Alana Dalzell (10*) did ensure Bready got the job done- but only after Coleraine had taken 4 early wickets in a respectable effort in the field.

The Foxies were well on top in their game against Strabane as Lucy Neely (45*) and Hannah McLaughlin (38*) posted a stand of 95 that saw the Ballymagorry girls make 111-2 as they batted first.

The Red Caps’ reply never really caught fire if truth be told- Mollie Devine picking up 4-11 and Sarah Black 4-15 in an excellent bowling effort that reduced the batting side to 51 all out.

A couple of things to note from this game- the first being a senior debut in Strabane colours for 10-year old Abaigh Gillespie who played really well for her team. It’s probably fair to say that cricket runs in the family if your dad has 120-odd International caps, but what a fantastic achievement for the young Strabane girl.

And if that wasn’t enough, Jamee McCauley picked up her first ever catch in the senior ranks- a diving, one handed effort (she says) that was followed by a lap of honour around Ballymagorry.

It’s really good to have the women’s game back ahead of a really exciting season at all levels this summer.

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