Ireland Under 19's defeat Combined Services
Ireland Under 19's completed their short tour of England with a comprehensive six wicket win over Combined Services at Uxbridge.
Services never really recovered after slumping to 17 for 5 having been inserted by the Irish youngsters. Shane Getkate (4-19) and Craig Young (2-7) did the initial damge with the new ball, while the spin combination of Jack Blakiston-Houston (3-28), ad Lee Nelson (1-9) ensured the prssure was kept on.
Wicket-keeper Stuart Houghton (43) and George Cessford (25) added 48 for the 6th wicket in the only partnership of note, as Services crawled to 115 all out in 44.1 overs.
In reply, Ireland lost Stuart Thompson (0), and James Shannon (7) early on, but a fine unbeaten 62 from Ben Ackland ensured an easy win. He stroked 8 fours and a six in his 71 ball knock, and was well supported by skipper Andrew Balbirnie who made 36.
Ireland lost Lee Nelson for 7 with victory in sight, but won by six wickets with almost 20 overs to spare.
There was further good news for Ackland after it was confirmed he had received his clearance from ICC Europe to play in next week's European Championships in Jersey.
Team manager Brian Walsh saluted the win saying, "Our opening bowlers Shane Getkate and Craig Young have caused problems all week, and it was good to see our spinners backing them up."
"I thought our fielding and catching were exceptional, and we're looking good for the championships in Jersey. We've known all along just how strong our batting is, and it's comforting to see the bowlers and fielders gelling together."
"It's a great boost to the squad to have Ben Ackland available. He showed today just what a prodigious talent he is, and he's difficult to bowl at when he's in that kind of form. We also have Paul Stirling to join the team, so we're pretty focused and confident ahead of the Europeans, which are a hateway to the World Cup proper."
At Vine Lane, Uxbridge, Ireland Under 19's defeated Combined Services by 6 wickets.
Combined Services 115 all out (44.1 overs, Stuart Houghton 43, George Cessford 25, Shane Getkate 4-19, Jack Blakiston-Houston 3-28, Craig Young 2-7, Lee Nelson 1-9) lost to Ireland Under 19's 116/4 (30.3 overs, Ben Ackland 62*, Andrew Balbirnie 36, Ash Watson 2-19, David Wade 2-21).