Mitchell Thompson spun his way to a five-wicket haul before Matt Ford struck a commanding half-century as the Leinster Lightning Bolts put themselves in a strong position at the close of play on Day 1 of their match with the MCC at Trinity College.
Malahide’s James Newland opened the bowling for the Bolts after it was agreed the visitors would bat first. Aside from that it was the youngsters who were asked to deliver, and they did so in spades for new Lightning Head Coach Nigel Jones, on his first day of work for the province.
YMCA’s Mitchell Thompson (5-58) was a constant threat and deceptive with his flight and pace of delivery. He ripped through the MCC middle order as only Fionn Hand (33) passed 25.
Jamie MacNulty (2-46) from Merrion and Pembroke’s Gavin Hoey (3-32) took the other wickets as nine wickets fell to catches before Hoey bowled last man Bowlby to close the MCC innings on 187.
It would have closed at the end of the over anyway, as it was agreed both sides would have 60 overs to bat in their first innings. The MCC leaving 2 balls behind.
Cormac McLoughlin-Gavin and Seamus Lynch fell cheaply bringing the Ford brothers together. Greg (21) was the aggressor initially before being bowled by Hand.
Once he fell, Matt settled into an anchor role for the Bolts and compiled a composed and assured half-century off 75 balls. He dominated a 40-run fourth wicket stand with David Cosgrave (10) before adding 68 with Patrick Tice (29*).
Matt Ford fell when he pulled a full toss from spinner Michael Hogan to deep mid-wicket and was out for 62. He had only had a reprieve from the very same shot two balls earlier, when that full toss was adjudged over waist high.
Tice and Thompson (7*) added just 8 runs to the score before the scheduled close of play after 42 overs had the Bolts on 148/5. Both will resume in the morning eager to add 40 runs at least to give the Bolts a first innings lead before that closes after 60 overs.
Both sides will then have a maximum of forty overs each in their second innings, in order to force a result.
An intriguing final day in prospect with play to resume on Wednesday June 12th at 11am.
2-Day Match, Leinster Lightning Bolts v MCC
At College Park, Trinity College, Dublin;
MCC 187 a/o 59.4/60 overs (Ropu Islam 37*, Fionn Hand 33; M Thompson 18-0-5-58, G Hoey 11.4-3-32-3)
Leinster Lightning Bolts 148/5 42/60 overs (M Ford 62, P Tice 29*; E Ahmed 4-0-5-1, F Hand 6-1-12-1)
Leinster Lightning Bolts trail by 39 runs with 5 first innings wickets in hand and 18 overs remaining in their 1st innings