Donemana triumph despite Campbell hundred
Barry Chambers (News Letter)
There's a saying in football that you never write off the Germans, and the same can be said of Donemana who produced a trademark fight-back to defeat Coleraine by ten runs in their Boib Kerr Irish Cup clash at Sandel Lodge.
18 year old Scott Campbell's second century of the season looked to have secured a famous win for the home side as they advanced to 165 for 2, requiring just 41 runs in seven overs, with Sri Lankan professional Chinthaka Jayasinghe at the wicket and the experienced David Cooke still to come.
The dismissal of Campbell, bowled by Sajid, proved to be the turning point however, as the fragility of the Coleraine middle order was brutally exposed by a ruthless Donemana attack, who in Junior McBrine and Kamran Sajid have the two leading wicket takers in the country, with 22 and 21 victims already this season.
The removal of Jayasinghe, stumped by Dougherty off McGonigle, attempting to repeat his six from the previous ball, opened the door for Donemana and Junior McBrine took full adavantage as Coleraine disintegrated under the pressure. Three wickets fell in three balls as 178 for 4 became 178 for 7, but with Cooke still there and Stevie Dunn always dangerous, there was still hope for the large home support.
The equation came down to 15 needed off 15 balls, but Junior McBrine bowled Cooke, and just four runs later Sajid bowed Dunn and Burns to seal the ten run win.
The result was particularly severe on Campbell who has been a revelation at the top of the Bannsiders order this season. The Ireland Under 19 international hit 6 fours and 3 sixes in his 108 from 133 balls, taking his season aggregate to 545 at 77.86.
That's only bettered by Donemana professional Kamran Sajid, whose tally now stands at 559 at 62.11 after his 75 from 135 deliveries here. He and Andy McBrine (46) shared a 3rd wicket partnership of 97 to take Donemana to 161 for 2 with 9 overs remaining.
A total of 225 looked to be within their grasp, but tight death bowling from Jayasinghe (3-49) and Gareth Burns (2-59) restricted Donemana to 205 for 6, despite some trademark lusty blows from Dwayne McGerrigle (26). That should have been a warning for Coleraine, on a track where the bowlers were always kept interested and a lush outfield meant boundaries were at a premium.
Donemana skipper Richard Kee, one of four survivors from the side which enjoyed their only success in the competition back in 2000, paid tribute to his team afterwards saying; "You saw today what the main quality in this side is- it never knows when it is beaten. To be honest we were really disappointed to have missed out on chasing down Bready's 348 last week and it showed me that these guys have so much belief. I never like to flag up individual performances but Ricky-Lee Dougherty kept a superb wicket today and a couple of brilliant stumpings kept us right in it. The team is playing well as a unit and Kamran Sajid is now really starting to come into his own after finding his feet last year.
Donemana's home ban in the tournament may have ended, but they are still forced to travel yet again as the draw sees them off to Dublin as they await the winners of the postponed Leinster versus Railway Union clash - that game takes place on July 7 and Kee admitted that it had taken a little wind out of their sails.
"You can't do much about an open draw but from being on a high after the win to being handed another trek south an hour later did dampen the atmosphere for a few minutes I would have to admit. That said we feel we're a match for anyone and the fact of the matter is we have to get on with it. We know we're now just one game away from another All-Ireland semi final and with the possibility of playing it at the Holm so that's all the motivation we will need".