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Match Report
Derek Scott

The wooden spoon in the 1997 Triple Crown was avoided but not by a proper match but by a "bowl out". Scotland won the Tournament in the same way bowling out England by 3-2. Rain was the problem. There were two long interruptions -v - Wales at Moseley. Wales had won the toss and batted. After 20 overs (49 for three) there was a 44 minutes break. After 44 overs (166 for six) there was a further break of 90 minutes. Then three more overs were bowled. Three wickets fell and Ireland had eight balls at the Welsh last pair but failed to break the partnership. With three overs left to be bowled there was more rain.

The Umpires decreed, an hour later, that a 20 overs per side new match should start. Wales again won the toss and batted. After 5.5 overs (44 for one) the Umpires decided the conditions were too wet and dangerous to continue. A bowl out was then held and it rained throughout. Wales failed to strike in seven attempts. Patterson failed in his two deliveries for Ireland. Then Davy hit once as did McCallan. Molins hit twice to give Ireland four strikes.When the Welsh seventh strike failed Ireland had won 4-0 with still a bowler on each side to bowl.

Bob Carter, the old Worcestershire bowler, gave Molins the Man-of-the-Match Award for his 100% bowl out success. This was unusual as such awards are generally not made for bowl outs.

Ireland played the same team in the original match as in the previous day v England. In the second match Dunlop came in for Rutherford.

There was a good start. The second ball of the match was played by Jones to mid-wicket. Lewis picked up and threw down the bowler's wicket. In the fourth over (Davy) North played a cross bat slog which Joyce held at mid-on. In the 12th over this was repeated by Longworth. 18 for three. Maddock joined Dalton in the only major stand of the innings. The pair put on 109 in 24 overs. After 15 overs only 25 runs were on the board because the opening bowlers were very good. Davy had two for 10 in eight overs and McCrum eight overs for 14 runs. Molins and Heasley had just come on when the first rain break came about.

Afterwards 50 was up in over 21. Joyce bowled and was inexpensive for 6 overs (16 runs) but gave up 19 in his last four. Dalton went to 50 off 88 balls in over 31 and 100 was up in over 33. The stand was broken by Joyce in his seventh over. Dalton had a wild swing and was bowled. 127-4-68. Two more wickets fell quickly, both to Heasley. Bell was lbw swinging across at 128 and Maddock was also lbw at 137. He tried to pull and the ball kept low. 137-6-45. The next pair L Jones and Brown put on 33 at a rate of a run a ball and were still together at the next prolonged rain break, 166 for six in 44 overs.

Only three more overs could be bowled - delivered by three different bowlers. Benson had Brown stumped at once. Then Davy took wickets with successive balls. Byrne caught L. Jones (24) in the covers and George, having crossed, was caught at the wicket. If the last wicket had been taken before more rain then Ireland could have waited to try to win on run rate over 20 overs. In eight balls the last Welsh pair added seven. Then more rain. V It was decided that this match should count for record purposes so Alan Lewis got his 119th cap, one ahead of Garfield Harrison.

Wales whacked away for 5.5 overs in the second match of 20 overs per side. The bowlers and fielders slid around. 14 came in two overs. Then McCrum bowled North. 18-1-16. 20 more balls were bowled by McCrum and Davy to L. Jones and Brown and 26 more runs were scored before the Umpires called it off.