Youngsters impress despite defeat for Second XI


Ballymena Second XI suffered a 48-run defeat at the hands of Academy on Saturday.

Although suffering from lack of availability during the bank holiday weekend the team saw the return of Stephen Colgan, Simon McDowell, and young John Glass.

Having lost the toss, Ballymena found themselves fielding first in what would have been fantastic batting conditions for any team.

However the young bowling attack of Owen Dick and Matthew Bell struck early for Ballymena.

Owen, who has surprised everyone this year with his speed and accuracy, hit the stumps in his first over, while Matthew Bell had a dream start, taking a wicket with his first ball.

With a good start in hand, Ballymena continued to field and bowl well. Only one Academy batsmen imposed himself, the South African born Mike Bently scoring a half century.

Simon McDowell and Andrew Craig bowled exceptionally well and economically, but Sam Glass was again the pick of the bowlers ending up with superb figures of 3 wickets for just 16 runs.

Sam who played only a handful of games for the second XI last year has been already tipped by many senior players to be the lead wicket taker this year.

Academy ended up with a below average score of 140.

Skipper Colgan and Simon McDowell opened the batting, but it was a nightmare start for the away team. Colgan, Harshaw and John Glass were dismissed without troubling the scoreboard.

Simon McDowell who had a good game overall, top scored with 20 and showed a good eye for the ball, something that brought him success in the 20/20 format of the game a few years ago.

After a poor start, Alan Dundas and Neil Fullerton fought hard to bring the score closer to a respectable conclusion, however Ballymena were bowled out for 92.

After a good fielding performance, the top 5 batsmen did not do their job and more will be expected in future.

Young players such as Owen Dick and Sam Glass continue to show great talent and with other players returning to action next week, there will be no doubt healthy competition for places.