Knights struck by Lightning to halt Cup title march
September 5th 2023 by Craig Easdown | International
BELFAST – The Northern Knights juggernauts seemingly inevitable march to the Rario Inter-Provincial Cup title suffered a blow after a resurgent Leinster Lightning outclassed the home side at Stormont today.
The headlines for this match will focus on the scintillating century by Seamus Lynch who incredibly came in at eight and registered his maiden inter-provincial century off just 58 balls. While this knock will deservedly draw praise, in truth it was a true team effort by the Leinster side that saw them recover from 47-4 in the first innings to win the match by 170 runs.
Chris De Freitas’ 59 held the top order together as the Lightning’s top order collapsed, David Delany’s 76 from 81 balls (as part of a 150-run partnership with Lynch) was pivotal in his side’s recovery, while Gavin Hoey’s career-best 6-26 wrapped up a big win for Leinster Lightning.
For the Knights, who started the day needing just one win from the last two matches, started their run chase well – being 134-2 in the 19th over with Paul Stirling (66) and Morgan Topping (41) looking set. However, Hoey’s intervention was decisive running through the middle and lower order with his accurate leg spin.
The Rario Inter-Provincial Cup now comes down to the last match with the Knights needing to beat the North West Warriors here at Stormont on Thursday – however if the Warriors cause an unlikely upset, the Munster Reds will snatch the title.
Northern Knights v Leinster Lightning, Rario Inter-Provincial 50 Cup, Stormont, 5 September 2023
Lightning 353-9 (50 overs; S Lynch 107, D Delany 76, C De Freitas 59; R Pretorius 3-47)
Knights 183 (30.2 overs; P Stirling 66; G Hoey 6-26)
Lightning won by 170 runs