Lightning secure title with narrow win

Leinster Lightning secured their eighth successive IP50 Cup success this evening after they edged out the North West Warriors by 4 wickets in an entertaining game at Eglinton. George Dockrell’s side chased down their victory target of 232 with just seven deliveries to spare to claim the honours with one round of matches still to go.

Andrew Balbirnie was the star of the show for the Dublin side- his 85 not out (8 fours, 1 six) anchoring their reply after the Warriors had threatened to spoil the party. The Ireland captain shared in a fourth wicket partnership of 123 with Lightning skipper Dockrell that eventually took the game away from the home side.

The visitors were struggling on 46-3 before that pair came together after Lorcan Tucker was run out for 18, and early wickets for Craig Young (2-43) and Graham Hume (1-33).

Dockrell made a composed 67 (6 fours, 1 six) and although Jamie Grassi was also run out for 21, Barry McCarthy stayed with man-of-the-match Balbirnie to see the job through.

Earlier, the Warriors batting was a story of two halves as McBrine anchored the top order with an excellent 72 (4 fours, 2 sixes), supported by William Porterfield who added 33. Runs dried up in the middle, with Graham Kennedy’s 18 the best of the rest, before Nathan McGuire, batting at number 9 gave the innings a real lift at the back end.

The Glendermott player hit 6 fours and 2 sixes in a 46-ball unbeaten 53 as he shared in a last wicket stand of 50 with Craig Young (13) that changed the complexion of the match. David O’Halloran (4-44) was the pick of the Lightning attack while Dockrell chipped in with 2-37.

That certainly sent the Warriors into the break with renewed purpose and although the early wickets at the start of the reply kept things very interesting, it was ultimately the Balbirnie/Dockrell partnership that sealed yet another trophy for Nigel Jones’s charges.

At Eglinton, North West Warriors lost to Leinster Lightning by 4 wickets

North West Warriors 231 all out (49.3 overs; A McBrine 72, N McGuire 53*, W Porterfield 33, D O’Halloran 4-44, G Dockrell 2-37)

Leinster Lightning 235-6 (48.5 overs, A Balbirnie 85*, G Dockrell 67, J Grassi 21, C Young 2-43)

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