ITíS a mark of modern Irish cricket that even when the national team is in action there are still plenty of cricketers pursuing their careers in English cricket.

The Durham duo of Barry McCarthy and Stuart Poynter are playing almost every day, and with luck will get a first XI chance before the season is out.

This week they were in action against Worcestershire in Darlington, with McCarthy taking 11-2-47-0 and 10-2-45-1, his only wicket being that of Brett DíOliveira, McCarthy also made 13 while Poynter made 4 and 37 not out as Durham won by six wickets.

The keeper also added four more catches to his seasonís haul. In the T20s McCarthy took 2-30 and 1-29 off his four over spells, and made 8no and 6.

Poynter made 29 as Durham won by three wickets, and then a battling 44 off 31 as his county chased down the win by one wicket when Graham Onions hit a six off the last ball.

For their club sides at the weekend Poynter made 26 for Boldon against Brandon, and McCarthy 10 and 0-62 off 14 for Gateshead Fell v Whitburn.

Mark Adair was in action for Warwickshire in the 3-day game against Notts, bowling 12-3-18-1 and 4-0-11-0 as they lost by five wickets. He also made 10 and 8no.

The sides also played three T20s, with Adair returning impressive figures: 4-0-15-3, 2-0-8-1 and 4-0-15-1.

Robert McKinley made an excellent 83 for Loughborough MCCU against the touring Australian Universities on Monday.

The Ballymena man batted 139 balls and hit 11 fours. Bobby Gamble missed the game, away with Somerset 2nds for whom he returned 27-8-100-1 and from No.9 made 21 off 57 balls in a vain bid to claim a draw against Gloucestershire.

The pair were reunited for the BUCS League game in Exeter, with McKinley making 14 and 6-1-16-3, Gamble 13 and 8-0-25-0.

Gamble was also wicketless for Plumtree in the Notts Premier League game against Welbeck Colliery. He bowled 7 overs for 44 and didnít bat in the drawn game.

There were three other young Irishmen playing club cricket in the south of England this weekend. Pembrokeís Sonny Cott made 12 for Leatherhead against Weybridge but was out second ball for 0 v Guilford.

Andy Gorvin made 2 and took 1-16 off five for Havant v South Wiltshire, while Rushís Stephen Doheny was invited back to Bishops Lydeard after his debut century the week before.

This time he made just 5 and his two overs went for 28 as the club lost by 98 runs to the second-placed team in the West of England Premier League Somerset Division.