|Under 19 World Cup Qualifier: Ireland, July-August 2011|
PNG defeat Ireland to clinch finals place
Irish Daily Star
IRELAND’S Under 19 cricketers ended the World Cup Qualifying tournament in 3rd place after losing to Papua New Guinea in Eglinton today.
George Dockrell’s team finished behind Scotland and Nepal, while Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea and Namibia will also join the ten full members at the Under 19 World Cup in Queensland next July.
Ireland’s top order failed, as it did so often in the tournament. But the later batsman could not rescue the situation and a total of 155 was never likely to be enough.
Adam Coughlan again showed his battling qualities with 29, but only George Dockrell (24) and Shane Getkate (22) also passed 20.
With Gloucestershire paceman Graeme McCarter unable to bowl, Ireland again opened with spin from Coughlan.
But despite losing five wickets – two to Pembroke’s Barry McCarthy – the south sea islanders romped home with 20 overs to spare.
It is a job well done by Dockrell and coach Jeremy Bray, but there will be hard decisions to be made before the finals next summer.
Several players looked out of their depth at even this level. And if the measure of a successful U19 side is the number of players who graduate to full honours, then this may prove a disappointment.
Dockrell will have a long and glittering career, Getkate, and Andy McBrine could well win several caps. McCarter and McCarthy look useful prospects too.
But few would bet on any others making the enormous leap to international cricket.
“We’ve a long way to go to the finals”, Bray said last night. “And a lot of work is still to be done.”