Ireland find no answer to Dutch demolition squad
Phil Simmons’s side knocked out of World Twenty20 after incredible run chase
The Dutch players and backroom team celebrate after their stunning six-wicket victory over Ireland in Sylhet, Bangladesh that saw them qualify for the Super 10s stage of the World Twenty20. Photograph: Barry Chambers/Inpho
Ireland’s Andrew Poynter is dropped by Ihsan Malik of the the Netherlands in their World Twenty20 Group B match in the International Cricket Stadium in Sylhet, Bangladesh. Photograph: Barry Chambers/Inpho
Ireland have enjoyed some heady days since debuting on the world stage in 2007, but yesterday in Sylhet they got a taste of the upsets they have dealt out to the likes of Pakistan and England as the Netherlands chased down 190 in just 13.5 overs to claim a six-wicket victory and a place in the Super 10s stage at the World Twenty20.
Adapting a hell for leather approach after Ireland had made an above par 189 for four after being put in to bat, the knowledge that they had to chase down the total in just 14.2 overs at more than 13 runs an over helped free both minds and shoulders as the Dutch batsmen attacked the Irish bowlers from the off in a barrage of big hitting on the small ground.
Ireland were really in a no-win situation, as even victory would be enough to knock out Phil Simmons’s side after Zimbabwe had earlier moved to the top of Group B with an easy victory over the UAE.
The Netherlands have mined their diaspora for players like no other country in recent years, with yesterday’s XI containing four Australians, two South Africans and two New Zealanders.
Dutch skipper Peter Borren moved up the order after regular opener Michael Swart picked up a finger injury and he signalled his side’s intent with a boundary four off Paul Stirling’s first ball, although nine runs off the initial over was well behind the asking rate. That all changed in the second over when young off-spinner Andy McBrine was clobbered for four sixes in five deliveries by left-hander Stephan Myburgh.
The South African-born opener would go on to tee up the victorious chase with a stunning knock of 63 from 23 deliveries, with four fours and seven sixes, putting on a T20 international record of 91 in the six powerplay overs.
Borren went off the last ball of the powerplay, with George Dockrell running backwards to hold on to a good catch off the bowling of Kevin O’Brien, before Dockrell got rid of Myburgh, with Ed Joyce taking the catch on the boundary .
When Logan van Beek holed out to a fine catch by Irish skipper William Porterfield off O’Bri en, it offered Ireland a glimmer of hope. It didn’t last long as Joyce misjudged an attempted catch to get rid of South Australia batsman Tom Cooper off Dockrell.
Cooper hit four straight sixes off the left-arm spinner as 25 runs came off the 11th over to leave the Dutch requiring 33 off 20 balls to qualify.
Cooper would fall in the final throes after making 45 from 15 balls but wicketkeeper Wesley Barresi got his side over the line with three balls to spare, hitting Tim Murtagh for a four and two sixes in the 14th over, the second maximum seeing his Dutch team-mates flood the pitch in celebration at an incredible victory that saw them hit a record 19 sixes.
Ireland’s players were shell-shocked at the outcome, including Kevin O’Brien, who had made a personal T20 best 42 from 16 balls, sharing in a 101-run stand in 45 balls with Andrew Poynter, whose 57 off 28 was also his best in format.
“It’s a bit of a shock you know, I think we always knew Holland were going to come hard,” admitted O’Brien. “They had to chase it in 14 and a half overs or something to leapfrog us but none of really envisioned what actually happened. It was some remarkable hitting from Myburgh, Pete Borren and Cooper and Barresi. We just didn’t have any answers.”
Porterfield admitted he could have used his seamers more in the early stages, but he also praised the Dutch .
‘A lot of credit’
“ To get up to 190 after being put in, we were pretty confident we could go out and defend that. But the way they came out and played, it was pretty clean striking from the off and you’ve got to give them a lot of credit.”