Ballymena Cricket Club Second XI kick-started their 2016 season with a comprehensive victory over Cooke Collegians in round one of the Junior Cup.
Fielding first, Ballymena started as they ended last season, with great energy and enthusiasm. The opening bowling pair of Owen Dick and Alan Dundas provided the perfect mix of youth and experience, and they both bowled superbly well.
Undoubtedly, the first 10 overs belonged to young Owen, bagging a five wicket haul in only his second game of the year.
Continuing on from the success of the opening bowling pair, Sam Glass and Anthony Frazer took over working hard to control the ball in windy conditions. Bowling with great variation and commitment both Sam and Anthony piled on the pressure. During this period the fielding from the home side remained first class, with John Glass and Andrew Craig taking tough catches.
In the end, although batting on a slow wicket, Cooke Collegians were all out for 94.
Sam Glass bowled his 10 overs for an impressive 19 runs and one wicket. Anthony Fraser bowled 7 overs for only 17 runs and was very unlucky to finish his spell wicketless.
Andrew Craig, the sides best bowler during the 2015 season, also bowled tightly, taking a wicket with his first ball! Alan Dundas in his second spell ended up taking 2 wickets resulting in superbly economic figures of 9 overs, 6 maidens, 5 runs – a great effort and a valuable addition to the Ballymena squad.
In reply, it was a sound and dogged performance from the experienced opening batsmen of David Montgomery and skipper Stephen Colgan.
Both players toughed it out on a typical start of season Ballymena wicket, reaching the target on the 23rd over.
David ended up with 38 not out, and Stephen 32 not out as Ballymena won by 10 wickets. Ballymena now face Waringstown at home this Saturday.