1st XI Match Report – (a) – Clontarf – T20

Phoenix had suffered three defeats at Castle Avenue in 2013 before pulling off a surprise home victory in the Alan Murray round robin stage with the two teams passing like ships in the night as one went straight back to Division 1 and the other went straight back to Division 2. David Ford returned to the side hopefully well rested after his holiday. Clontarf won the toss and chose to bat first. The eleven who took the field for Phoenix were Emmanuel Peterson, M D Masud Ahmed, Jeffrey Dudgeon, Kaleem Sheikh, Eoin Cleere, Thomas Anders, Vish Vaidyanathan, Amit Battan, Nitin Naik, Ben White, David Ford.

Colin Currie and Bill Coghlan began positively against Thomas Anders and Ben White although the two Phoenix teenagers suffered most when they bowled their fourth over later in the innings. Kaleem Sheikh bowled an unbroken spell of 4 overs and ended with 1-19. Coghlan was first to go when he was bowled by Sheikh for 35. Vaidyanathan had Currie caught by Naik for 39 and Peterson saw some willow hit leather in his spell but he ended as the leading wicket taker for Phoenix with 2-35. Delany and Poynter added 60 for the fourth wicket and the Clontarf innings closed on 166 for 4.

Peterson opened the innings with Masud as his partner but the stand was short lived as Van der Merwe had Masud caught to exit on 4. Dudgeon proved a little more durable than the Bangladeshi on this occasion but he was dismissed by Morrissey for 13. Sheikh made a breezy 9 and Peterson reached 25 but then fell lbw to Paul Ryan and there was a sharp contrast between 68 for 0 and 68 for 5. The lower middle order and tail enders did enough to ensure that Clontarf were kept out in the field for the full 20 overs with Cleere and Thomas Anders both making 10, Vaidyanathan getting 1, Battan ending undefeated on 19 and Naik scoring 18 with White and Ford not required to bat.