Ireland put up a decent show with the ball but failed to pull out the same heroics with the bat as they meekly submitted to an experienced Kiwi side in a Super 8 clash yesterday.
New Zealand won the toss and chose to bat first. But the start was nowhere close to what was expected by the side as they lost early wickets. The batsmen were tied down by some
good nagging disciplined medium pace bowling that forced the Kiwi batsmen to commit errors. At one point the New Zealand side was reduced to 118 for 4. Then it was upto Peter Fulton and Brendon McCullum to string a valuable partnership and rescue the Kiwi ship which was slowly getting caught in horse latitudes!! Peter Fulton scored a patient 83 from 110 deliveries while McCullum made a solid 47.
McCullum played a fantastic knock as he accelerated well along with James Franklin towards the latter part of the innings. Franklin made 34 runs from 22 deliveries that included 3 fours and a six. The New Zealand team ended up scoring 263 at the loss of eight wickets from their allotted 50 overs.
The Irish batting did not get the start they would have liked, thanks to some experienced express bowling by Shane Bond. He tormented the minnows by picking up two early wickets that put them on the back foot. The team never got going and kept losing wickets at regular intervals. With the momentum lost, it began to appear a lost cause for the Irish team. To compound their misery, there was ‘philosopher’ Daniel Vettori who weaved his magic with his slow left arm spin. He bamboozled 4 Irish batsmen and ended up with fantastic figures of 4-23. Only two Irish batsmen crossed the 30 run mark- K. Obrien and N. Obrien. Both struck 2 four’s each with the former striking 3 sixes too!
All in all, it was a one sided game where the experienced Kiwi side played to their potential and ‘used’ their strength and experience to scuttle the Irish team out of the match!