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Ireland International Matches Database
Match Report
Derek Scott

Hong Kong won the toss and started as well as Ireland did -v- USA (100 for one in 24 overs). They then emulated Ireland -v- USA and subsided, just as rapidly, to 193 for nine in 50 overs. Ireland made light of this. They moved smoothly to 110 for two in 30 overs, accelerated, and won in 46.4 overs.

McCallan was now well enough to play and returned for Mark Patterson while McCoubrey came in for Mooney who had bowled poorly v- USA. The pitch was hard and good.

It was another hot, if windy, day when Malik and Chaudhuri opened for Hong Kong with the new ball given to Eagleson and McCoubrey. There were no alarms until the sixth over when Malik was caught at first slip off McCoubrey. Eames (left hander) replaced him. White bowled two overs for 11 and 40 was up in 10 overs. Heasley replaced White and was hit for nine by Eames. However, in McCoubrey's next over, Eames was caught by Molins, this time at second slip. Sharma was next and most of the 52 run stand that ensued came from Chaudhuri's bat (29 to 17). However before he had scored Sharma gave a wide chance to Andy Patterson off McCoubrey. 50 came in 14 overs. Eagleson, for one over, replaced McCoubrey (two for 15 in seven overs) and was hit for a six by Chaudhuri. McCallan bowled one over and was hit for two fours by Chaudhuri.

Then Dwyer and Curry began to bowl in tandem. 80 was up in 20 overs and 100 in 24. Curry's second over accounted for Chaudhuri. He was caught at the wicket, off a ball that lifted, for a well made 53 off 67 balls. 101-3-53. This brought about a steady fall of wickets with no stand higher than 21. Brew, the Hong Kong Captain, joined the fairly passive Sharma and 18 were added. In Dwyer's eighth over Brew hit him to long-on for four and skied the next to Ed Joyce at gully. 119-4-9. Davies lasted five overs and 21 were put on. Then, in Curry's eighth over (37th), and the first over after a drinks break, Davies pushed to short extra cover, called a run, was sent back but could not beat D.Joyce's throw. 140-5-9.

Nine runs and two overs later the newcomer, French, hit Curry directly to McCallan at short mid wicket. 149-6-1. Lamsam joined Sharma and saw 150 up in over 39. Eagleson had now replaced Dwyer (one for 29 in 10 overs) and, in over 42, had the patient Sharma caught at the wicket. 154-7-42. Sharma faced 88 balls. He hit one four, one three and all the rest were twos and singles. The last two wickets to fall were to run outs, making three in all. Lama, the striker, tried a run to Heasley at short fine leg. Heasley made a fine stop then threw down the wicket before Lamsam arrived. 165-8-7.

Lama and Iqbal then put on 20 in four overs from McCallan and Eagleson. In over 49 Iqbal hit McCallan to Ed Joyce at mid-off. Joyce's throw to the bowler beat Lama's dive. 185-9-15. Eight more came in the remaining nine balls.

Ireland used seven bowlers. McCoubrey maintained speed and line to bowl eight overs for 22 and two wickets. It was strange that he did not bowl 10 as Eagleson, in 10, was hit for 48. Curry was tidy and picked up two wickets in 10 overs for 33.

Ireland were slower than Hong Kong for the first 20 overs (63 to 80) but only one wicket was lost. This was White who cut a four in the first over but was out in the fifth - driving fast bowler Zubair to cover's right. The fielder dived and took a good low two handed catch. 12-1-8. D Joyce joined Molins. In 10 overs the score was 34. Opening bowlers, Brew and Zubair, were replaced by Iqbal (off spin) and Lama (medium). Molins hit Lama for a mid-wicket six in his first over. 50 came up in 14 overs. D.Joyce was getting more strike and scoring more quickly. Another double change brought on French (off spin) and Sharma (leg spin) but after 26 overs the score was 100. A run out ended the stand in over 29 when Joyce needed four for his maiden half century. Joyce called the run to mid-off who dived, stopped, and threw down the bowler's wicket while lying on the ground. 100-2-46.

This was the last wicket to fall but Ed Joyce gave an early overhead caught and bowled chance to French. After 30 overs the score was 110. Despite many bowling changes the pace quickened and 60 were put on in 10 overs. Molins reached 50 in over 34. Malik cane on as a seventh bowler and Joyce hit his first ball for six over mid-wicket and lost the ball! 150 came in over 37 and over 40 cost 10 runs to bring up 170. Seven overs later the match was over.

Ed Joyce faced the 47th over with the scores tied and he on 47. He defended three balls and hit a boundary for the fourth to win the match and take him to 51. The unbroken stand was 97 in 109 balls. Molins made his highest score for Ireland - 81 not out from 117 balls with a six and five fours. Joyce faced 63 balls but got only three boundaries, a six and two fours.

Only one wicket fell to a Hong Kong bowler. Zubair had one for 38 in his 10 overs.

The Ajax Club welcomed the players and supporters in what was a very friendly atmosphere.

These teams were in opposition in Kuala Lumpur in 1997 when Ireland won - Curry, Andy Patterson and Eagleson were in that Irish team. Survivors from 1997 for Hong Kong were Eames, Sharma, Brew and Zubair.