The 62-run victory came courtesy of an excellent performance with the bat where former Ireland skipper William Porterfield and man-of-the-match William McClintock stood out. Porterfield had to “retire” during his innings due to migraine when on 35, but he returned 12 overs later and showed all his experience make a composed 73 that included 5 fours and 2 sixes.
Shane Getkate’s 47 also had 5 fours and 2 sixes while Stuart Thompson added 30 and skipper McBrine 23 as the North West side forced their way into the game having been put into bat.
The real fireworks were to come from McClintock however - the man Gary Wilson referred to as “the cleanest hitter of a ball you could hope to see” after he encouraged the Donemana all-rounder back into the squad this season. William gave himself a look at the start of his knock and then launched into the Knights attack, clubbing 6 fours and 5 sixes in his brilliant unbeaten 72 from just 46 deliveries.
That allowed the visitors to post a daunting 298-7 from their 50 overs with Mark Adair (2-33) and Ben White (2-53) best with the ball for the NCU outfit.
The home side lost James McCollum, run out in the second over of their reply, however they were dealt a massive blow soon after when Paul Stirling fell to an outrageous catch from Stuart Thompson for 16.
Jeremy Lawlor looked really impressive at 3 for the Knights and while Luke Georgeson (22) Harry Tector (22) and Ruhan Pretorius (15) batted around him briefly, the Warriors’ bowlers always looked to have everything else under control. Lawlor fell just 5 short of his century and after that, the outcome was inevitable.
Craig Young is bowling at the very top of his form at the moment and the former Bready man led the attack so well to finish with figures of 4-55. Skipper McBrine weighed in with an important 2-39 and despite finishing wicket-less, once again Graham Hume was bang on the money- conceding just 32 from his 10 overs.
An important victory this for Gary Wilson’s charges but the Head Coach knows that he has two vital games ahead in the next seven days and will be focusing on nothing but those.