Simpson century inspires Lisburn to first league victory

David Simpson batting for Lisburn during Saturday's match against Carrickfergus. US1525-528cd  Picture: Cliff Donaldson
David Simpson batting for Lisburn during Saturday's match against Carrickfergus. US1525-528cd Picture: Cliff Donaldson

Lisburn, inspired by a century from their captain Davey Simpson, won their first Premier League match of the season beating Carrickfergus convincingly by 139 runs.

Simpson won the toss on a bright day and the wicket true and hard in the Park he chose to bat first knowing that a win was vital to their cause.

Again, he opened with brother Richard and the pair, after a slow start began to score at a good rate taking the total to 62 before Richard was caught behind the wicket for a very useful 20.

The wicket had fallen in the 14th over and Robert Rankin came to the crease at number three. He and Simpson, who was batting fluently, added a further 66 in just 13 overs but the blossoming partnership was halted when Rankin was bowled by Eagleston for a rapid 34.

Davey Simpson was joined by professional Darryl Brown and their partnership for the 3rd wicket changed the shape of the game.

They batted with great purpose for the next 17 overs taking the Carrick attack to task. They scored at almost six runs per over and never gave a chance to the flagging bowlers.

Davey Simpson was eventually out in the 44th over having scored a priceless 102 off just 118 balls, his second century against Carrick setting up his team for an imposing total.

He was caught off Martin with the score at 240 adding 112 with the very positive Darryl Brown. He had stroked twelve boundaries in an innings which was badly needed in the circumstances.

Brown went on to another fine contribution of 70 off only 62 deliveries with eight fours and two sixes before he was caught and bowled by Eagleston in the 46th over with the Lisburn tally at 255 for 4.

Lisburn’s number five was James Magowan returning to the team for a fleeting visit and he too spent little time in scoring as fast as possible in the few remaining overs.

He managed a quick 20 before being run out but Richard McConkey and Glen Halliday also wasted no time in adding 18 in the last two overs taking the final Lisburn score to 299 for 5 when their 50 overs were completed.

The innings had shown great intent from all the Lisburn batsmen and they were rewarded with a more than intimidating total which left visitors Carrick with a mammoth task.

The Carrick reply began in disastrous fashion with the undoubted man of the match Davey Simpson claiming two quick wickets; Ring was caught by wicket keeper Neil Kilpatrick and Parkhill was clean bowled as Carrick were suddenly 17 for 2 in the 7th over.

Worse was to follow for Carrick as Gilmour was brilliantly run out by James Magowan for 6 and the talented professional Kamtekar was lbw to Darryl Brown for just 4 as the visitors collapsed to 45 for 4 in the 14th over.

Lisburn, at this stage obviously saw their chance to record their first league win but Holmes and Eagleston ‘dug in’ making the bowlers toil for the 5th wicket.

The stubborn pair added 56 in the next 13 overs before Holmes was superbly caught by Kilpatrick diving far to his right.

He had scored 49 but with his dismissal Carrick found themselves 101 for 5 in the 27th over leaving a further 200 runs to win the game with Lisburn totally in command.

Ryan Eagleston, seemingly the eternal stumbling block as far as Lisburn are concerned, continued to hold up the progress of the Lisburn bowlers and they had to a wait another six overs before Brown was clean bowled by Aaron McKeown and the off spinner repeated the dose an over later with the wicket of Grant leaving Carrick on the brink of defeat on 122 for 7.

Eagleston went on to score his half century but thankfully was clean bowled by Darryl Brown in the 42nd over for 69 and Carrick ended their innings on 160 giving Lisburn a most welcome victory by 139 runs with 8 overs to spare.

Darryl Brown returned the great figures of 3 for 14 in his 5 overs while Davey Simpson added 2 for 27 to his first innings century. James Magowan chipped in with 1 for 26 and spinner Aaron McKeown grabbed 2 for 21. Mark Berry claimed the other Carrick wicket to fall with 1 for 40 off his 8 overs.

This had been Lisburn’s most positive effort so far this season and demonstrated that with some determination and attacking intent, results can be achieved in the very competitive Premier League.

Lisburn do not have a league game this Saturday. They were due to play CSNI at Stormont but instead the hosts are involved in a delayed Cup match; the game will be played later in July.