Hobart, Oct 19 (Ajit Weekly News) Curtis Campher and George Dockrell shared an unbeaten 119-run stand for the fifth wicket in Ireland’s successful chase of 177 to seal a come-from-behind six-wicket win over Scotland in their Group B match of the first round in ICC Men’s T20 World Cup at Bellerive Oval on Wednesday.
After opener Michael Jones hit a magnificent 86 off 55 balls to carry Scotland to a massive 176/5, the bowlers came into the act by reducing Ireland to 61/4 in 9.3 overs and victory looked improbable with every minute.
That’s when Campher (72 not out off 37 balls) and Dockrell (39 not out off 27 balls) joined forces to shock Scotland and get a win out of nowhere for Ireland with a brilliant partnership in just 9.3 overs and keep them in the reckoning for a Super 12 spot.
The duo ran excellently hard between the wickets, converted their ones into twos, twos into threes and kept the boundaries coming consistently from the 11th over onwards and yielded runs in double figures till Campher finished off the chase with a hat-trick of fours, the last of which was a crisp square drive past point, and roared in delight over getting a thrilling win for Ireland.
In the chase, Paul Stirling and captain Andy Balbirnie impressed with boundaries in the first three overs. But the duo could not build on, falling to fast bowlers Safyaan Sharif and Brad Wheal in power-play.
Spinners Mark Watt and Chris Greaves then took over, removing Lorcan Tucker (20) and Harry Tector (14) just as they were on the verge of converting their promising knocks into something substantial.
When the drinks break was taken, Ireland had new batters in Campher and Dockrell with 116 runs still needed in 63 deliveries. After Dockrell took a boundary each off Wheal and Greaves, Campher joined the party by slog-sweeping Watt for six in an 18-run 13th over which also had four wides.
Campher frequently targeted the short square dimensions of the stadium, as seven of his nine boundaries came from square of the wicket regions on both sides, with Dockrell supporting him well.
Campher also used the crease well, heaving, scooping, cutting and slicing for boundaries for his first T20I fifty coming at a strike-rate of 225 and led Ireland to their highest ever successful run-chase in T20 World Cups.
Brief scores: Scotland 176/5 in 20 overs (Michael Jones 86, Richie Berrington 37; Curtis Campher 2/9, Mark Adair 1/23) lost to Ireland 180/4 in 19 overs (Curtis Campher 72 not out, George Dockrell 39 not out; Michael Leask 1/16, Brad Wheal 1/25) by six wickets.
–Ajit Weekly News
News Credits – I A N S