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Match Report
Derek Scott

Ireland retained the same team that played the previous day.

Bangladesh beat Ireland for the second time in two days at Limavady. Much like yesterday, it was a case of missed opportunities by the Irish. They had reduced Bangladesh to 116 for 6, and a vital catch went down, Johnny Bushe spilling a chance behind the stumps off Kyle Mc Callan. Mohammed Rafique was the benefactor - he had made 13, lucky for him in this case.

At that stage McCallan had taken 3 wickets in an excellent display of off spin bowling. His victims were Ahmed, Rana and Saleh, two of them being beaten by a combination of flight and turn. Gordon Cooke removed Javed Omar for 8, and Nazeer Shoukat then dismissed Ashruful for 22 and yesterday's centurion Iqbal for 10.

The innings was rescued by a 89 run, seventh wicket stand between Khaled Mashud 51 not out, and Mohammed Rafique who made 42. Gordon Cooke polished off the tail to end up with 5 for 55. McCallan and Shoukat also were among the wickets, taking 3 for 33 and 2 for 32 respectively in the Bangladesh score of 231.

In reply, Ireland were well placed at 130 for 4 with 17 overs remaining. However 3 wickets in the space of 2 overs effectively ended the game. Kyle McCallan went for 22, attempting a sweep off Rana. That ended a stand of 42 between him and Peter Gillespie. In the next over Gillespie was bowled by Tapash Baisya for 29 - 2 balls earlier Dom Joyce had been caught behind off the same bowler for 3. Jeremy Bray top scored for Ireland with 46 before being bowled by a quicker ball from Rafique. Khaled Mahmud finished with 4 for 34 and Tapash Baisya 3 for 45. However it was Mohammed Rafique who earned the Man of the Match award for his 42 and 2 wickets for 30.

Ireland were dismissed for 177, leaving Bangladesh winners by 54 runs.

Ireland coach Adrian Birrell was naturally disappointed after the game. "We didn't play to the standard we've set ourselves over the course of the two games. Our fielding was poor in both games and our bowlers didn't put the balls in the right places often enough. Full credit to Bangladesh who were very sharp, and took their chances. It's a sad end to what's been a good year for the team, with our wins over Surrey and the West Indies. Still, it's a good lesson to us with the ICC Trophy coming up next year. We can't afford to be complacent."

Ian Callender

There will be no danger of over-confidence when Ireland go into their ICC Trophy season after they suffered a second successive defeat to Bangladesh. If Ireland got closer than expected on Sunday at Stormont, this game showed the gulf which Ireland must make up if they are to compete on a level playing field with even the weakest of the one-day international sides.

Bangladesh, who head off to Scotland today to continue their preparations for next month's Champions Trophy in England, put on a much more impressive performance yesterday and with Ireland failing to reproduce their early season form, the victory margin of 54 runs was a fair reflection of the difference between the teams. The visitors showed their professionalism in the bowling department, conceding just five bowling extras but Ireland had the worst day of the summer with 23 wides and seven no-balls. It all added up to four extra overs as Ireland proved to be the perfect hosts.

Although Bangladesh struggled to 116-6 in 32 overs, the tell-tale signs were evident. Naseer Shoukat had already bowled nine wides and three no-balls, Jonathan Bushe had dropped two catches (with another one to come), and then Mohammed Rafique came to the wicket. The all-rounder was the only change to the Bangladesh team from Sunday but he proved to be too good for Ireland. First he scored 42 from 54 balls, including three sixes, and then he dismissed Jeremy Bray and Andrew White in the space of three overs to leave Ireland on 88-4. The surprise in his seven overs of slow left arm bowling was that he conceded 27 runs.

It was Khaled Mahmud who had made the breakthrough after Ireland were set 232 for victory on a pitch which was taking spin but gave the batsmen every opportunity to play their shots. Jason Molins was dropped at slip on 13 but it scarcely mattered as he played across a straight one from Khaled Mahmud just four runs and three overs later. When Andre Botha was out in the bowler's next over, it summed up the South African's frustrating season at international level. Every time he played an extravagant shot, he seemed to find a fielder and the ugly pull to mid-wicket was safely held by Nafiz. He made only five. Bray, returning to the ground where he scored a century against MCC, was positive from the off and looking good for a first half century since that innings two months ago, but, when he attempted to sweep Rafique's faster delivery, the ball cannoned into the stumps. He was four runs short of 50.

Peter Gillespie and Kyle McCallan attempted a revival but when the partnership was ended at 44, the middle order collapsed. McCallan skying the Bangla's other slow left-arm, Manjural, to mid-wicket, Dom Joyce was caught behind and Gillespie was bowled on the back foot by returning opening bowler Tapash Baisya. Shoukat was another batsman to fall in a bid for glory and Gordon Cooke and Bushe's attempt to convert their club form with the bat onto the international stage lasted just 13 runs. Adrian McCoubrey reached double figures, one short of his previous best with the bat, but by then an Ireland win was out of sight.

Cooke had earlier played his part with the ball, confirming National Coach Adrian Birrell's faith in him as a one-day bowler. He took four wickets in his last three overs to finish with his first five-for in Ireland colours. This is one person who does not want the season to end. McCallan also enjoyed a good day with the ball and fully deserved his three wickets, the first time he has managed this since bringing up his 100th cap, 13 matches ago. His dismissal of Bangladesh captain Rajin Saleh and the stubborn Aftab Ahmed were classic off spinners and Manjural then top edged an attempted pull to slip.

In contrast, McCoubrey is waiting to hear from Essex about a contract for next season, and another wicketless 10 overs yesterday will hardly help his confidence. Andre Botha was unusually expensive and Andrew White was needed for only two overs before Cooke returned to finish off the visitors.

Ireland and Birrell will have plenty to think about over the winter. The next competitive match is unlikely to be any easier, the Cheltenham and Gloucester Trophy game against county opposition next May.

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