The 2021 winner of the O’Grady Cup, for leading bowling average in the season, has been confirmed as Fionn Hand of Clontarf CC. His haul of 21 wickets at an average of 11.33 is enough to put him well clear of the next best average, which belonged to Jack Carty who’s wickets cost 12.78 apiece.
Hand’s best bowling performance of the season came on the opening day, when he tore Cork County apart with 4/12 in four overs. He also delivered excellent bowling performances for his side in victories over YMCA (3/7), Malahide (2/19) and Phoenix (2/7) with his economy in each of these games being excellent as it was across the whole season, where he went for just 3.9 runs per over in his 13 appearances.
With the top two bowlers in the standings being seamers, they are immediately followed in the standings by two spinners, as 3rd and 4th places are occupied by Aviral Shukla and Tom Stanton, who averaged 12.95 and 13 with the ball respectively.
Clontarf’s Hand however was fantastic throughout the season, and whilst he may not have bettered the averages of either Mikey O’Reilly (9.35) or Naseer Shoukat (9.7) who have won the past two seasons, his season compares extremely well against previous years. With an average of 11.33 he would have done enough to secure the cup in 17 of the last 20 seasons.
Hand is Clontarf’s 4th winner of the O’Grady Cup, with Joe Morrissey their next most recent winner in 2014 when his efforts helped propel the side to Senior Cup glory, however there is a gap of 64 years back to their previous winner of the award in 1950.
Congratulations from all at Cricket Leinster to Fionn on winning the O’Grady Cup for the 2021 season!