Being a Test playing nation West Indies carried the favorite tag. But by team comparison, Ireland was certainly the favorite. In fact West Indies surprised all by continuing the trend of scoring 300+. Ireland said, no worries and chased it down in just 45.5 overs. Beat it!! Decide who is the underdog for rest of the group matches. For the third consecutive World Cup, Ireland started their campaign by defeating a Test playing nation.
- MOM: Paul Stirling
4th Test playing nation defeated by Ireland in World Cup after Pakistan, Bangladesh and England.
102 by Lendl Simmons: 15th century by West Indies player, 1st by Lendl Simmons.
4 50s: Sammy 67-ball 89 runs, 92 by Stirling, 84 by Ed Joyce, 79* by Niall O’Brien.
- Record 6th wicket partnership for West Indies.
2 100+ Partnerships: 154 6th Simmons, Sammy
101 2nd Stirling, Ed Joyce
24th 100+ partnership for West Indies in WC, 1st for 6th wicket.
14th 100+ Partnership vs West Indies in WC, 3rd for 2nd wicket.
3rd 300+ score by Ireland in World Cup.
3rd 300+ score vs Ireland in World Cup.
4th 300+ total by West Indies in World Cup.
5th 300+ total vs West Indies in World Cup.
- Most Economical: 0/26 by McBrine (Ireland)
0/44 (9 overs) Jason Holder
3 Maidens: 1 each by Mooney and McBrine (Ireland), and Jason Holder (WI).
Most Successful: 3/71 James Taylor
Most Expensive: 3/71 James Taylor, 1/71 KJ’O Brien, 0/52 (6 overs) Roach
West Indies Strike Magical 304/7
Considering the weak team, nobody expected West Indies to score big unless Gayle or Samuels strike big. But they started their World Cup campaign by touching magical 300 runs. In the last four matches also, all the four teams batting first scored 300 or more.
Sent to bat first, Smith and Gayle were cautious in approach. But the double blow of Dwayne Smith (18) and Darren Bravo (0) in the 8th over left them at 31/2. Gayle (36) added 57 painful runs in next 13.2 overs with Samuels (21) and then the pressure saw both become victim of Dockrell in 22nd over. Ramdin (1) followed in 24th over as third wicket of Dockrell. West Indies faced the same danger that South Africa faced against Zimbabwe. They were 87/5 in 24th over.
From there on Lendl Simmons and Sammy built the inning attacking the Irish bowlers. Sammy (67-ball 89 runs with 9 4s and 4 6s) was more attacking and they added record 154 run 6th wicket stand by the time Sammy was caught by Dockrell on the bowling of Mooney in 45th over. Score read 241/6. In the company of Andre Russell (13-ball unbeaten 27 runs with 3 4s and a six), Simmons (84-ball 102 runs with 9 4s 5 6s) added 51 runs and West Indies reached 304/7.
Ireland bowlers had kept West Indies batsmen in control for the first 25 overs proving Captain Porterfield’s decision to bowl first correct. Mooney (1/59 in 7 overs)), Sorensen (1/64 in 8 overs) looked expensive due to late hitting.
McBrine (0/26) produced the best spell of this World Cup. KJ O’Brien (1/71) bore tha maximum brunt of Carribean hits. Stirling (0/33 in 6 overs) went wicketless while Dockrell (3/50) was the most successful.
Ireland Show 300+ Is No Barrier
In 2011 they chased 329 of England. Now, when 4 test playing nations succumbed to 300, Ireland proved why they confidently took fielding as option. They became the first team of this World Cup to win while chasing.
Captain Porterfield (23) was sent back by Gayle as they jumped to 71/1 in 13.3 overs, but Stirling (84-ball 92 runs with 9 4s and 3 6s) took the match away in the company of Ed Joyce, adding 106 runs for 2nd wicket. Ed Joyce (67-ball 84 runs with 10 4s 2 6s) was more damaging as he added 96 runs with Niall O’Brien for 3rd wicket. After the wicket of Joyce in 39.2 overs, Ireland were 273/3 needing only 34 runs to win. The match was almost won.
But, Taylor had not accepted that as with quick wickets of Balbirnie (9) and Wicketkeeper Wilson (1) followed by the run out of KJ O’Brien (0), he has given some hope to West Indies. But he did not get any support and Niall (60-ball unbeaten 79 runs with 11 4s) ensured there was no twist in the predictable story taking Ireland home by 4 wickets in the company of Mooney (6* runs) as they scored 307/6 in 45.5 overs.