|Under 19 World Cup Qualifier: Ireland, July-August 2011|
Another close call for Ireland
Ian Callender (Belfast Telegraph)
Anyone looking for an exciting cricket match should follow Ireland U19s for the next week when the World Cup qualifying roadshow resumes in the North West tomorrow.
Incredibly, for the fourth time in four games in Dublin, Ireland’s match was decided in the last over, this time with three balls and two wickets to spare and a third win, the latest over Kenya at Rathmines, puts George Dockrell’s side back on course to not only to qualify for the finals in Australia next year but also to win this tournament.
As in their previous two victories, over the USA and Afghanistan, yesterday’s was one that had no right to win, after slumping to 88 for six, chasing 223, with only 20 overs remaining.
But Shane Getkate, showed why he is being selected as a specialist batsman – he has yet to bowl – with an innings of 63 from No 7 and Graeme McCarter added 51 from 47 balls with three fours and two sixes. Together they put on 81 in 13 overs to set up another famous Irish fightback.
When Getkate skyed one to long-on, he was replaced by Barry McCarthy, surely the best No9 in the tournament, and his unbeaten 26 from 23 balls saw Ireland to the winning post. But no Ireland win in this tournament can be completed without Josh Hall and yet again, the Waringstown all-rounder hit the winning runs.
The less said about the top-order Ireland batting the better – let’s hope Sunday’s display was not a one-hit wonder, ironically the hosts’ only defeat.
McCarter was the pick of the Ireland bowling and his three wickets for just 33 runs pipped Getkate to the man of the match award. Among his wickets was Kenya’s class act, Duncan Allan, an Australian who studied in England before moving to Africa. He scored his second century of the tournament and dominated a fourth wicket stand of 93 with his captain Kennedy Ochieng in just 13 overs, as 59 came off the five overs batting powerplay.
It only made Ireland’s chase more exciting. Next the not so mighty Vanuatu at Coleraine tomorrow.
Scores: Kenya U19s 222-6 (D Allan 123, K Ochieng 32; G McCarter 3-33, A McBrine 2-31) Ireland U19s 226-8 (49.3 overs, S Getkate 63, G McCarter 51, B McCarthy 26 not out, A McBrine 21, J van der Merwe 20). Ireland U19s won by two wickets.
Tomorrow’s fixtures: Ireland v Vanuata (Coleraine), Canada v Nepal (Bready), Namibia v Afghanistan (Limavady), Kenya v PNG (Strabane), Scotland v USA (Eglinton). All games start at 10.45am.