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Match Report
Derek Scott

Ireland were on the threshold of a famous victory over the limited overs World Cup champions. In 55 overs India were held to 210-7. In reply, Ireland started at 2:30 PM with a 75 run stand in 21.3 overs between Masood and Warke, 27 runs coming at one period of three overs from Patil and Mohinder - each player hitting a six. Mohinder then bowled Masood and the impetus slowed.

Seven overs later Yadav had Warke stumped for 40 but only 22 runs had been scored with Dennison as his partner. 97-2 in 28.4 overs. Shastri, slow left-arm, joined the attack and had Dennison caught at mid-on in his second over with the total on 106. This was in 33.3 overs.

At tea, taken at 4:30 PM, 37 overs had been bowled and the score had only advanced by one run. Prior was one but Cohen was only two having been in for 8.2 overs. So 104 were needed in 18 overs. Patil and Shastri resumed as bowlers. Prior hit a big six of Patil in the 39th over but Shastri bowled him next over with a ball that kept low. 117 in 39.2 overs.

Now came Garth to play his first innings for Ireland. He did not score off his first 15 deliveries. Cohen could still only manage singles except for a big six over mid-on off Shastri in the 44th over. Sharma replaced Patil for the 46th over and Shastri changed ends. 150 was up in 48 overs. Sharma brilliantly caught and bowled Cohen in the 50th over. He had made 25 in 65 minutes and had done his best but is too orthodox for limited overs cricket. 161 for 5 in 49.3 overs.

5.3 overs remained to get 50. Corlett joined Garth who now opened up. With five overs to go 49 were needed. 8 came in Shastri's next over, the 51st, 11 in Sharma's over, which included a no-ball. Opening bowler Prabhakar bowled the 53rd and conceded 8. 22 were now needed off two overs but only six came off Sharma's last over. 16 were needed now or 15 if only one more wicket was lost. Prabhakar's first ball was a wide. Garth hit the next to long-on where Maninder caught him. At the other end it would have been a six. Garth's 41 came in 56 minutes off 54 deliveries but he did not score until his 16th delivery. He received a great ovation on his way out. Five more runs came to send up 201. It had been a brave effort which lost its way in mid-innings.

The match began on a grey day before a reasonable crowd at 10:49 AM. BBC Northern Ireland televised the whole match which finished at 6:04 PM. Commentators were Carl Anderson and Dermot Monteith. At least one scheduled programme was abandoned to stay with the exciting finish.

Pandit and Lamba began to Corlett and Jones. 19 were up when Jones had Lamba well caught down the leg side with the last ball of the six over. For the 13th over Garth replaced Corlett. Azharuddin hit his first ball for four but was caught at mid-off by the second. In the two matches Garth bowled five balls at the Indian star and got him out twice. 34-2-11. Patil was next and he began very slowly leaving the scoring Pandit.

McBrine replaced Jones for the 18th over and gave away two fours, and this brought 50 up. Halliday replaced Garth for the 25th over. The two spinners bowled in tandem and bowled their 11 overs each unchanged. In over 28 Pandit was stumped off McBrine for 44 (scored in 90 deliveries) with the score at 75. Vengsarkar joined Patil and the pace quickened. The pair added 69 in 34 minutes in just over 12 overs. Vengsarkar gave two chances. When 10, with the score on 87, McBrine missed a difficult caught and bowled. When 12, at 93 and again off McBrine, the usually sure Corlett dropped one on the midwicket boundary. These were expensive misses. 100 was up in 37.2 overs.

But Patil now launched an assault. He hit McBrine's last over for 6-4-6. He hit Halliday for a six in the next over, the 39th. Then, for no good reason, Prior replaced McBrine whose 11 overs were finished. The over cost 17 with two sixes. In the 41st over Halliday had Patil stumped. 144-4-61 in 41.3 overs. Patil hit five sixes and two fours. Prior was given another over in which seven runs were scored and the last 50 runs had come in 4.4 overs.

Lunch came at 1 PM with the score on 155-4 in 44 overs, Vengsarkar 25, Shastri 6. 11 overs remained. These were shared between Halliday (one) and Corlett (five) at one end and Jones (two) and Garth (three) at the other. 55 runs were scored which, in a slog, was reasonable. Corlett bowled Shastri in the 47th over. 158-5-7. Sharma hit two sixes and was bowled by Corlett in the 51st over. 182-6-18. The final wicket to fall was that of Vengsarkar who was out for 46 scored 84 deliveries in the 54th over. Cohen caught a fine catch running towards the boundary from mid-off off the bowling of Garth. The Irish fielding had been excellent and the bowling good apart from the mysterious introduction of Prior. The pitch and outfield were slow.

For India for this match Vengsarkar and Sharma replaced Shrikkanth and and Binny. The Cawood Trophy (a glass bowl) was presented to India. Former England captain, Bob Willis, a guest of Cawood, made man of the match awards (a glass tankard each) to Patil for India and Garth for Ireland. A Souvenir tie was on sale and will show a profit of almost pounds 1000.

The Meadow, Downpatrick