BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
Big-HITTING Zimbabwe cricketer PJ Moor stole the limelight in the Irish Inter-Provincial Cup after a record-breaking 152-run knock which saw Muster Reds record the biggest successful run chase in the competition to beat defending champions Leinster Lightning by five wickets in Dublin on Tuesday.
The 31-year-old wicketkeeper batsman’s score was the highest individual score in Inter-Provincial Cup history, surpassing Simi Singh’s 136 achieved back in 2016.
In the process, Moor, who is Muster Reds’ captain, also recorded his highest score as well as a second century in List A matches.
After they were set a target of 305 to win on a very blustery day, the Reds led by Moor who opens the bat for the side, produced a superb performance to claim back-to-back wins in this season’s 50-over Cup competition.
Reds now sit firmly on top of the four-team domestic event with four matches to go while Leinster Lightning are second followed by Northern Knights and North West Warriors, respectively.
“It’s fantastic,” said Moor of his record-breaking performance. “At the halfway point we were confident that 305 was quite chase-able on a wicket like that and the sun shining today which was also fantastic.”
Moor gave credit to other batsmen including fellow opener Murray Commins for their 61-run first wicket stand which set the team up for a big total.
“Cummings upfront, I think our partnership was above 50 and that always set a nice platform at the start of an innings. He was unlucky to get out but I am sure that there are big runs in all the other batters in the not too distant future.
“We said we wanted to come here and make some points and we now go back to Cork which is our home ground with a win which is exciting for us. We have got two wins already and four more games left. Hopefully the weather doesn’t play a part and we manage to play all those games but we are in a very good position,” Moor said.
Moor has represented Zimbabwe in eight Tests, 49 ODIs and 21 T20Is and his last cap for the country was in October 2019 when he featured in a T20I match against Singapore.
After he was overlooked for selection in the national cricket team for more than a year-and-a-half, Moor decided to turn down a central contract from Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) in April last year to join Muster Reds, sparking speculation that he was eyeing the opportunity to represent Ireland on the international scene.
Moor has played club cricket in Ireland for YMCA in Dublin and CIYMS in Belfast.
A couple of months back, Moor helped local franchise Mountaineers to the Pro50 Championship title.
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