Larne’s senior team made their second trip to Ards in the space of five days for their PGL Cup quarter-final last Thursday.
The Glenarm Road men were firm favourites against the league’s basement boys, and they came up with the goods to book their place in the last four.
The form rinks, skipped by Michael Murphy and Andy Kyle, ensured Larne had a comfortable evening as both raced into double figure leads after five ends. Larne never let their advantage slip below 20 until the final couple of ends as they closed out an expected 15-shot win to set up a semi-final clash with Dunbarton.
Alan McLean played well to record the biggest win of the night, 29-13. Michael Murphy’s rock-solid quartet again produced the goods to win by 11. Andy Kyle’s men eased off over the final ends to draw 21-21, while David McRandal’s four lost 12-22.
Larne faced another tough away draw on Saturday with a trip to Coleraine in the last 16 of the Irish Cup. The 2013 champions have had a great start to their season and Larne knew they would have to be at their very best to progress.
The visitors couldn’t have hoped for a better start as they put 15 on the giant scoreboard before the home team could settle.
Larne continued to dominate over the first 10 ends as the home team battled hard to stay in contention. Nigel Todd, Simon Bell, Paul Robinson and Andy Kyle led the charge as they stormed into a 17-2 lead. Kyle’s rink have been flying and they were brilliant throughout.
The other three rinks were tight as the Larne team were playing well to a man. Time and again Coleraine fought back to three or four shots, but Larne were still 10 up at 15 ends.
The opposition skips were playing big shots, particularly against Kyle, and his lead was whittled down. Michael Murphy and David McRandal were involved in tight tussles while Jason Kerr felt the heat.
The final quarter of the game belonged to the Bannsiders. The Larne men played well and asked the questions, but the home team built up a head of steam and secured a 13-shot victory.
Next up: Ewarts (h) Saturday, June 27. Notable absentees this weekend will be Andy Kyle, who is away on international duty, and Andrew Robinson who is at a wedding.