North County 2's find heroes in Sean Rooney and Owen Graham to start their season with 2 wins from 2
North County 2nd's continued the good start to the season at the Inch last Monday with a win over Clontarf. Captain Sean Sludds gave us a brief review on their opening two matches.
Owen Graham was the hero on the opening day of the season for our 2nd's. Railway Union won the toss and given that we were still in April opted to bowl first. It was always going to be tough batting conditions and some very good bowling, along with some average batting, meant that Railway Union bowled us out for 102 in 22.4 overs, with Dhram Singh top scoring with 33.
A quick turnaround meant that County would have a chance to make use of the good bowling conditions. However, when Railway were 40-2 and 52-3, it appeared that they were in control. Then Owen Graham came into the attack for county. Owen, a promising 17 year old swing bowler, went on to win the game for County, bowling Railway out for 83 runs in 19 overs. Graham, finished with figures of 6 wickets for 21 runs in 7 overs.
Two weeks later, the wicket in Inch was beginning to harden up and playing conditions were a lot different. On what was a magnificent wicket, especially given the fact it was still the first week of May, under the sunshine in Inch, Clontarf won the toss and opted to bat. It was difficult work for the bowlers, with the pitch offering very little help, and Clontarf went on to make a score of 267 - 7 in their 50 overs. Given the low scoring affair 2 weeks ago, we felt that this would be a tough chase.
Sean Rooney and Craig May opened the batting and when Clontarf struck in the third over, County were feeling the pressure. It took calm heads from Sean and Callum Polo to settle things down again, putting on a partnership of 94 for the 2nd wicket. When Clontarf got Polo out for a battling 35, they must of thought that they were back in the game.
But Sean Rooney again soaked up the pressure and began to build a partnership with Manmeet Singh. Luke Whelan and Safdar Ali also made partnerships with Rooney, those three making scores of 23, 8 and 22 respectively. But Sean showed great mental strength to stay at the crease, and to keep his side in the chase to the very end. He went on to make a huge score of 121, in what was his first game of the season, and left the crease in the 44th over with County only needing 8 runs to win.