Ireland will play Scotland tomorrow for a place in the T20 World Cup finals this autumn after beating the Netherlands by 54 runs in Abu Dhabi last night to finish top of Group B with a 100 per cent record.

Skipper Laura Delany led the way for her side with a top quality 70 not out from only 45 balls as her unbeaten 89-run partnership with Eimear Richardson took the Girls in Green to a more than useful 144-4.

Delany took full advantage of two dropped chances to strike two maximums and eight fours - the last three coming from the final three balls of the innings - and Richardson showed why she is the Ms Reliable of the line-up with a solid 34 not out.

The fifth-wicket pair were a great advertisement for coach Ed Joyce’s ‘fearless cricket’ approach having come together with Ireland wobbling on 55-4.

For once the prolific openers failed to fire: Amy Hunter fell for a single in the first over and Gaby Lewis soon followed for 10. 

Orla Prendergast made heavy weather of her 19 from 28 balls while all-rounder Leah Paul, who hadn’t batted or bowled in her three previous appearances in the Qualifier only faced five deliveries.

The pace and vicious late inswing of Prendergast proved too hot in the powerplay as her four overs off the reel returned figures of 3-26, steady Arlene Kelly claimed a couple and Delany put the icing on her personal performance with 3-6.

The Dutch were dismissed for 90 and missed out second spot and a semi-final against Sri Lanka while Ireland now face a winner-takes-all showdown with Scotland the evokes memories of a similar men’s clash at the 1997 ICC Trophy.

One Scottish tabloid journalist dubbed that clash ‘The Million Dollar game from Hell’ and missing out on qualification tomorrow would prove costly for Delany’s team as well, not so much financially but in terms of reputation and bragging rights.