Ireland retain control in Intercontinental Cup despite batting collapse

United Arab Emirates still 136 runs short of follow-on total

Ireland’s John Mooney celebrates taking a wicket with team-mates at Malahide.  Photograph: Cathal Noonan.

Ireland’s John Mooney celebrates taking a wicket with team-mates at Malahide. Photograph: Cathal Noonan.

 
United Arab EmiratesIntercontinental CupMalahide

It left the visiting side still 136 runs short of the follow-on total after Ireland finished on 492, well short of what had looked possible when Ed Joyce – unbeaten overnight on 229 – and Andrew Balbirnie strode to the wicket just before 11am with conditions far more agreeable than the opening day.

Having passed his personal best in setting a new Irish highest score, Joyce had talked of pushing on to a triple century by continuing to attack. Cricket, the great leveller, wasn’t on message as the 36-year-old added just two runs before he was yorked by Amjad Javed, Joyce limping off after being hit on the foot by the delivery.

Javed looked a different bowler from the opening day and he would go on to also trap Balbirnie leg before for 10 and have Gary Wilson caught behind for two as he took three wickets for two runs in seven deliveries.

Kevin O’Brien (29) and George Dockrell (22 not out) brought Ireland towards 500 before Javed wrapped up things just before lunch when taking his fourth wicket.

Taking 20 wickets on a good batting surface was always going to be the harder task for Ireland, who found out at the World Cup that the UAE possess plenty of batting talent.

They started off tightly as Tim Murtagh gave away just one run in a five-over opening spell, with John Mooney then capitalising as Amjad Ali mistimed a short ball to Murtagh at short midwicket where he held on to a fine catch.

Partnership

Bowling from the same end, Mooney took the key wickets of Khurram Khan (24) and Swapnil Patil (30), while spinner George Dockrell got back among the first-class wickets with two, and Young a third.

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