Lisburn lost their third successive Premier League game when they travelled to Ballymena last Saturday.
Knowing the importance of the match in the possible relegation stakes, the visitors were always chasing the cause after Ballymena had won the toss and batted first.
The home side’s openers, Taylor and Gibson had little problem in putting on 56 for the first wicket with Davey Simpson, Richard McConkey and Darryl Brown unable to provide the penetration but in the 15th over, Taylor was caught by Neil Kilpatrick off Brown for 29 and least the seal had been broken.
Carl Williams claimed the second wicket to fall with his off spin. It came in the 20th over when Gibson was lbw for 21 and in the 27th over the talented Lazars was caught by Mark Berry off Davey Simpson reducing Ballymena to 91 for 3.
At this point the Ballymena professional, Asit Ghumman was controlling the innings and in James Kennedy he found a reliable partner. The pair dominated the ensuing 20 overs gradually taking the game away from Lisburn who did not help themselves with some average fielding and a surfeit of wide deliveries.
The partnership added 130 for the 4th wicket taking Ballymena to 221 for 4 in the 48th over before Ghumann was caught by Mark Berry off Darryl Brown for a superb 84 in just 96 deliveries and included 11 boundaries in his 33 overs at the crease.
Darryl Brown claimed a third wicket when he clean bowled Montgomery and ran out Harshaw but Kennedy remained 56 not out at the completion of the Ballymena innings which totalled 232 for 6 at the end of their allotted 50 overs.
All the Lisburn bowlers toiled on the unresponsive wicket with Darryl being the pick of the attack with 3 for 37 off his 9 overs.
Chasing the difficult total of 233 to claim the vital league points, Lisburn quickly lost their skipper and opening batsman Davey Simpson in the 4th over but brother Richard,his opening partner formed a good stand with Robert Rankin.
They took Lisburn’s score to a very respectful 81 before Rankin was clean bowled by Taylor for a very good 41 which included five fours and a six. He was out in the 19th over leaving Lisburn still requiring almost 150 to win.
However a major blow was the loss of professional Darryl Brown just two overs later, caught at slip of Lazars for a ‘duck’ and 5 overs later Glen Halliday joined him in the pavilion having been given out lbw for 9 leaving Lisburn again struggling on 103 for 4 in the 25th over.
Richard Simpson had been holding up an end but in the 27th over he too was dismissed for a more than patient 41 off 78 balls and four boundaries.
Richard McConkey and Mark Berry then got a very pleasing stand together batting for 8 overs and adding 30 runs for the sixth wicket before McConkey was bowled by Taylor for a useful 21. The pair had taken the score to 145 in the 35th over but their dismissals signalled the beginning on the end.
Mark Berry was next out for a well-constructed 16 proving his potential. Lisburn’s tail enders could add just another 17 runs before Neil Kilpatrick, Callum Atkinson and Carl Williams were out leaving the final tally at 165 in the 44th over and yet another defeat, this time by 67 runs.
Lisburn now face Carrickfergus in another crucial match this Saturday in the Park and this now becomes a ‘must win’ encounter if they are to make any impression on their standing in the Premier League this season.
M.Taylor ct Kilpatrick b Brown 21
J.Gibson lbw b Williams 29
A.Ghumman ct M.Berry b Brown 84
S.Lazars ct M.Berry b D.Simpson5
J.Kennedy not out 56
W.Montgomery b Brown 2
R.Harshaw run out 1
Total 232 for 6 in 50 overs.
Fallof wkts 1-56 2-70 3-91 4-221 5-231 6-232
Lisburn bowling D.Simpson 10-1-62-1 R.McConkey 4-0-8-0 D.Brown 9-0-37-3 M.Berry 4-0-26-0 C.Atkinson 5-0-30-0 C.Williams 10-0-26-1 A.McKeown 7-0-31-0
R.Simpson b M.Taylor 47
D.Simpson ct Lazars b Purse 0
R.Rankin b M.Taylor 41
D.Brown ct Ghumman b Lazars 0
G.Halliday lbw b M.Taylor 9
R.McConkey b F.Taylor 21
M.Berry ct M.Taylor b F.Taylor 16
N.Kilpatrick b F.Taylor 1
C.Atkinson b Gibson 0
C.Williams ct Kennedy b Lazars 3
A.McKeown not out 7
Total 165 all out in 43.1 overs.
Fallof wkts 1-4 1-81 3-83 4-103 5-115 6-145 7-148 8-148 9-148 10-165
Ballymena bowling M.Purse 3-0-16-1 M.Gibson 6-1-15-1 S.Lazars 8.1-0-34-2 F.Taylor 6-0-8-3 M.Taylor 10-0-36-3 A.Ghumman 4-0-30-0 J.Gibson 6-3-15-1
Result Ballymena won by 67 runs.