Poynter times it perfectly as Clontarf claim Irish Senior Cup
Emmet Riordan reports from Malahide where batsman’s century brilliantly reeled in Merrion
Clontarf’s Andrew Poynter celebrates after his century in Malahide. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho
A perfectly timed century from Ireland international Andrew Poynter steered Clontarf to a thrilling six-wicket victory over Merrion as they collected their first RSA Irish Senior Cup at Malahide today.
Chasing a target of 254 after losing the toss, the 26-year-old brought up his century off the penultimate ball of the 49th over with the shot of the day as he crushed the ball through covers for his second century of the season.
That left his side needing just two runs, the first of which was handed out by the umpires after Tyrone Kane bowled a bouncer over shoulder height and a no-ball was awarded.
Poynter then hit the final ball of the over into the covers to set off a pitch invasion from his team-mates and raucous celebrations amongst the large Clontarf contingent in the stand.
Poynter showed all his experience and indeed temperament as he guided his side on a tough chase, sharing in two fine partnerships along the way after openers Dom Rigby (21) and Bill Coghlan (20) went after making decent starts.
Poynter put on 89 for the third wicket alongside former Ireland star Andre Botha, who made 42, before being joined by Clontarf skipper Eoghan Delany in a 97-run stand that brought them to the edge of victory.
Delany was bowled by Dom Joyce in the 48th over, but Vijay Gopal got Poynter on to strike and he delivered in stunning style to secure the victory.
Played in front of the stands being erected for the upcoming Ireland game against England, Merrion had earlier recovered from a slow start with a brilliant third-wicket stand of 143 between pro Brett Thompson (78) and Ireland batsman John Anderson (87).
And even though both departed before pushing on to their centuries, Merrion skipper Joyce came in and clobbered 51 off 31 balls to help his side post a score of 253 for seven.
At the time it looked a little above par, but Poynter has other thoughts with as good a knock as has been seen in All-Ireland decider.
SCOREBOARD: RSA IRISH SENIOR CUP FINAL(at Malahide)
Merrion won the toss and batted.
K Beasley c Delany b van der Merwe 0
B Ackland lbw b Morrissey 9
B Thompson c Morrissey b Van der Merwe 78
J Anderson c sub (Craig) b Van der Merwe 87
T Kane run out 3
D Joyce not out 51
P Blakeney c Poynter b Botha 4
D Poder c Delany b Van der Merwe 3
S Morrissey not out 8
Extras (lb1, nb1, w8) 10
Total (for 7 wkts, 50 ovs) 253
Did not bat: D Watkins, T Stanton.
Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-18, 3-161, 4-176, 5-204, 6-216, 7-224.
Bowling: Z van der Merwe 10-1-46-4; J Morrissey 10-1-39-1; A Poynter 10-0-56-0; A Botha 10 -1-58-1; C D’Arcy 6-0-29-0; A Nazir 4-0-24-0.
D Rigby lbw b Morrissey 21
B Coghlan c Thompson b Watkins 20
A Botha c Stanton b Morrissey 42
A Poynter not out 102
E Delany b Joyce 42
V Gopal not out 4
Extras (lb5, w18) 23
Total (for 4 wkts, 49 ovs) 254
To Bat: Z van der Merwe, Robert Forrest, Asim Nazir, Conor D;Arcy, J Morrissey.
Fall of wickets: 1-38, 2-58, 3-147, 4-244.
Bowlling: T Kane 10-1-44-0; D Joyce 10-1-44-1; T Stanton 7-0-23-0;
S Morrissey 9-0-58-2; D Watkins 6-0-38-1; J Anderson 7-0-42-0.
Clontarf won by 6 wkts.