Ardmore won their first Premiership title after 144 years of heartbreak in a thrilling, tense match at the Bleachgreen.

Not only did they have to beat Fox Lodge, but they needed to do so by 30 runs or more to ensure the three bonus points required to leapfrog Brigade.

Skipper Rachit Gaur opted to bat first and it looked a wise decision as he and fellow opener Ryan Brolly shared an opening stand of 67 to settle the nerves.

He was joined by Dharm Singh and the pair combined superbly as they shared a third wicket partnership of 90, with Singh clearing the ropes three times in a hard-hit 48 from only 43 balls.

Gaur went on to top-score with a brilliant 108 from 121 balls that included nine fours and two sixes, before being dismissed in the last over.

A total of 229 for eight gave the large home support genuine hope and their decibel levels rose when Gaur and Harry Zimmermann removed both openers cheaply – the latter accounting for Sri Lankan professional Gayan Maneeshan.

The visitors rallied with Jason Milligan going quietly through the gears as he and Craig Doherty shared a third wicket stand of 57.

However, Caolan Young accounted for Doherty, and fellow spinner Dharm Singh removed the dangerous duo of Johnny Robinson and Brian Allen in successive balls as 83 for two became 84 for five.

Milligan and Ali Doherty rebuilt with a stand of 38, but another cluster of wickets fell to leave the Foxies looking down and out at 134 for eight.

The home crowd sensed history but Milligan found a willing ally in number ten Adam Walker, and in a ninth wicket partnership of 54, the tension built.

The match had now become a game within a game, but the decisive moment came  when Milligan was trapped lbw on 94 (eight fours, two sixes) by Muhammed Edrees 12 short of the 200 Brigade were hoping for.

Three balls later, Adam Walker’s attempt to clear the boundary off Caolan Young saw him well held by Zimmermann at long-on to spark a pitch invasion.

To be fair they had waited 144 years for this moment!