This was Ireland's 16th match in Gillette/Nat.West Competitions. As on about three previous occasions there was a glimmer of hope at the start at a bright, hot, sunlit Headingly. After 10 overs Yorkshire were 31 for three with Australian Test player, Bevan, out. The next pair put on 207! The eventual 60 overs score was 299 for six. This was away beyond Ireland's capacity but the reply was 228 for seven - Ireland's highest score, by far, in any Competitive limited overs competition against professional teams.
And yet! Ireland's first wicket fell at 92 (a run out) after 24 overs. The fourth wicket did not fall until the 40th over at 149, the fifth at 194 after 50 overs - only 55 runs in these 10 overs. Finally, the last 10 overs yielded but 34 runs. On paper the reply was very respectable but, once again, the Irish seemed to play as if a draw were possible! 110 were scored in 30 overs making the residual rate, at that point, over six runs per over. This had risen to 7.5 runs per over after 40 overs. Surely far better to have attempted the rate and been all out for, say, 180?
Ireland dropped Dunlop and Benson was unfit. Rea, now available, came in and Doak replaced Benson. Yorkshire had injury and illness problems with Moxon (Captain) and Blakey, (wicket-keeper) but White, Bevan and Gough were all Test players.
Ireland sent Yorkshire in. Kellett and Vaughan (an Under 19 International) faced Eagleson and Patterson. The young bowlers had a great start. In Eagleson's third over Smyth dived forward at extra cover to catch Vaughan. 14-1-4. The same bowler, in his next over, took a good low catch to dismiss acting Captain Byas, 18-2-4. In the next over, the 10th, Patterson got Bevan, an easy lobbed catch to short extra cover. 31-3-6.
There stopped Ireland's success. White joined Kellett and they both made centuries. 50 came up in 15 overs. Harrison began a fine stint and bowled his 12 overs for 35 runs. 100 came up in the 30th over. Kellett was first to 50 in the 34th over. Lunch came after 36 overs with Ireland holding Yorkshire well, the score being 130, White 45, Kellett 56. Ireland had tried six bowlers.
Graham, Doak and Lewis (a 7th bowler) were all tried in the immediate post lunch period. White went to 50 in the 38th over. The run rate increased and after 50 overs Yorkshire were 203. Eagleson and Patterson returned for the last 10 overs. They yielded 96 runs and three more wickets fell. Kellett was first to a century. He went to exactly 100 out of 227 in the 53rd over. He was run out in the next over - a fine return from Gillespie at long-off. 238-4-107. Kellett faced 173 balls and hit a six and seven fours. Gough was next. He hit 33 in 19 balls including three sixes. He saw White to his century after 54 overs (at 245) and also saw his dismissal. Patterson delivered a high full toss which might have been called no-ball. White hit it to Rea at long on. 277-5-113. White faced 137 balls and hit two sixes and 10 fours. Patterson bowled Gough at 297 with the second last ball of the innings and saw Smyth drop Hartley at deep square leg off the last ball. The two young quick bowlers had an expensive last 10 overs but they took the five wickets which fell to bowlers.
Warke and Rea gave Ireland their best ever start in these matches. Hartley, Gough, Robinson, Stemp and White all had a bowl to no avail. Warke started very slowly. After 15 overs the score was 45 and Rea had hit five fours mostly by drives. In his 70th innings he reached 2000 runs. In the next five overs 30 was scored with Warke coming to life. With tea looming (25 overs) disaster struck. Rea played into the covers and called a tight run. Warke refused and Rea was out for 48 out of 92 on the last ball of the 24th over.
Smyth joined Warke. 100 came up in 28 overs and 138 after 36 overs. Warke went to 50 in the 34th over. In over 37 Smyth whacked one from Hartley which White caught over his head at short extra. 140-2-26. Two balls later Lewis fell across his wicket, as is his wont, and was lbw White returned and had Doak lbw at 149 playing across the line. Harrison was Warke's next partner. They added 45 but it took 63 balls. All this time Yorkshire kept six men inside the ring as the Irish scoring rate was so low.
A tiring Warke fell at 194. He cut Morris and Kellett caught a great catch at point, 10 yards from the bat, two handed, low to his right. Warke's 82 was Ireland's highest score in these matches. He hit 11 fours and faced 157 balls. 200 came up in over 53. At 208 Harrison went down the pitch to White and snicked to the wicket-keeper. Graham began to hit out. He was 20 undefeated at the end off 30 balls. Gillespie was out off the second last ball, lobbing White to short mid-wicket off the splice.
Brian Bolus made Kellett Man-of-the-Match but there was a fair case for White who took three for 38 to add to his century.