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Match Report
Derek Scott

After a long period of limited overs match defeats Ireland, in recent years, have come to reasonable equality in such matches against Scotland. In the last four seasons there have been three wins and two defeats. In this match Ireland decided to bat and recovered from 66-4 and 131-5 to, at least, get over 200. This was probably 40 runs short of the required total although Scotland were in the 48th over before winning by five wickets and three of those wickets fell when within 13 runs of victory. Ireland made one change from the previous day, Fourie replacing Eaglestone.

The day was much warmer than the previous one and the sun shone as Strydom and Wilson opened the batting to the bowling of Blain and Nel, both pretty quick. Nel's first over to Wilson was a maiden and Wilson hit the first four in Nel's second over, a square drive. Strydom followed suit in Nel's third over with a square cut. Strydom it was who was first out. In Nel's fourth over he swished at a straight ball and was caught at the wicket. 21-1-11. Stirling played out the over and hit a four to long off in Blain's next over, the ninth. Then, in Nel's sixth over, he lunged out and was caught at deep gully, the fielder diving forward. 33-2-4. Botha was next. Goudie, medium pace, replaced Blain. Wilson, in successive overs, hit fours off Goudie and Blain. Then, in his eighth over, Nel took his third wicket. Botha had a wild swish and gave wicket-keeper Smith another catch. 45-3-1.

White joined Wilson. Goudie changed ends and Rogers, slow left arm, came on. There was a spate of scoring. In four overs this pair put on 21. In over 18, Goudie, White hit successive fours and Wilson was dropped at short mid-wicket when 31. He did not unduly benefit. In over 20 Goudie had his revenge. Wilson nibbled badly and Smith had his third victim. 66-4-39. This was a bad loss for Ireland as Wilson was well set on 39 in 67 balls. However White and Haire retrieved the situation. They started slowly and Haire snicked a four in Goudie's sixth over, the 24th. The 25th over, the half way mark, the score reached 79. There was frequent change among Scotland's bowlers and 100 came up after over 29.

In over 30 Barrington's (medium/fast) second over, Haire hit his first six for Ireland over long-on. The score after 30 overs was 108. The question was whether 220 could be achieved? Haire hit two fours in the next three overs and went ahead of White. Blain returned for over 36. His second ball saw White out to a wonderful catch at deep square leg on the boundary. White played a tennis shot to hit the ball in that direction. The fielder, Hamilton, backed, and jumped and caught the ball behind him in his right hand as he fell backwards. 131-5-34.

Poynter came in and saw Haire hit Barrington for three fours in over 37, one to fine leg and two to long off. Blain then took Poynter's wicket with the second ball of his 10th over. Poynter drove at it and snicked it to the wicket-keeper. 144-6-1. Interestingly that was the fourth catch to the wicketkeeper today, coupled with five to the wicket-keeper yesterday. McCallan came next. Watson, off spin, replaced Barrington while Goudie came on for Blain (10-2-29-2). Goudie, in his first over back, the 40th, had Haire driving and being caught high at gully. In six previous innings for Ireland Haire scored 49 runs in total. Now, in his seventh innings, he scored his first 50 from 63 balls, with one six and seven fours. It was a shame he got out as he might have dominated the last 10 overs with runs badly needed. 152-7-54.

However, all was not lost with Fourie joining McCallan. In fact the ninth pair put on 58 runs in 10 overs. The start was slow as no more wickets could be lost. Watson and Goudie bowled the first three overs of the stand for only nine runs. Then both batsmen hit fours in over 47 off Watson. Rogers in his 10th over, and the 48th, conceded eight including a four to extra cover by McCallan. Goudie came on for his 10th over, the 49th, to replace Watson. 13 runs came off it. McCallan hit four which bounced over long-on's head and then hooked another four. Nel, who had not bowled since the 17th over, came on for the last over. Fourie hit a four to wide mid-wicket off the second ball. There were eight runs in the over whose last ball bowled McCallan. The latter had made 39 out of 64 scored while he was in. He hit four fours in the 38 balls he had faced.

Three Scottish bowlers bowled 10 overs each. Rogers was the most expensive of the six bowlers used, no wickets for 49 runs. Blain and Goudie, 10 overs each, took two wickets each. Nel was the best bowler with figures of 9-4-25-4 and only he actually bowled a batsmen, McCallan. At least Ireland batted out the 50 overs after having seven wickets down after over 40.

In reply the left-handed Gavin Hamilton (who had played one Test Match for England) opened with his captain, Ryan Watson. Hamilton hit the first ball of the innings, from Connell, for an all run four to long-off. In fact Ireland made a good start. Watson gently drove the last ball of Fourie's first over to mid-off. 6-1-0. With Sheikh in, also left-handed, Ireland had no further success until over 16 with the score now at 76. Hamilton made merry early on and hit four fours in overs three to six at which time the score was 31. Botha replaced Connell for the seventh over. 50 came up in over 10, at whose end the score was 53. McCallan replaced Fourie for over 12 and his second over was a maiden to Sheikh. Kidd came on for Botha for over 15 and Hamilton hit a four to third man. In McCallan's third over Sheikh hit a four to mid-wicket but was out two balls later, caught by Kidd close in on the leg side. 76-2-23.

Scotland's policeman wicket-keeper, Smith, was next and Hamilton went to 50 next ball in 52 balls. Smith's stand with Hamilton was by far the best stand of the match and indeed it won the match. They put on 122 runs in one ball under 19 overs and scoring between them was almost level. They started in over 17. After 20 overs the score was 86 and the first four of the stand was to long-on by Smith to bring the halfway total to 97. White was tried for over 26 and each batsman hit a four off Kidd in over 27 to bring 100 up. Kidd was bowling too flat and not trying to flight the ball.

Connell replaced Kidd, (seven overs for 27) for three overs. The score after 30 overs was 180 so 93 were needed in 20 overs. White only bowled three overs and then McCallan replaced him for two overs. Fourie came back at that end for over 36 in which 11 runs were scored and 150 came up. Fourie only bowled that one over and then Botha and Kidd bowled six overs in tamden. In over 40 Smith went to 50 off 68 balls having hit four fours in recent overs. The score after 40 overs was 175. The 44th over was McCallan's 10th. Hamilton hit the fourth ball for four over mid-on to take him to 102 in 136 balls, with 13 fours.

The next over, the 45th, was Botha's last and in it he had Smith caught at the wicket. 198-3-59. Smith's innings lasted 83 balls and he hit six fours. With Watts coming in there were now 31 balls left to score 13 runs to win. How Scotland struggled to get them! After over 45 McCallan, Botha and Kidd were bowled out. White came on for over 46 and this season he had bowled 10 overs and taken one wicket for 60. Watts jumped down the pitch to the fourth ball and was stumped. 199-4-0 McCallum joined Hamilton, who was on 109, with 12 needed in 25 balls. McCallum played out the over. Connell replaced Botha for over 47 and it cost seven.

Over 48 was White again. Hamilton got a two off the first ball and gently lobbed the second to Haire at mid-off. 208-5-115. Hamilton was in for 168 minutes, faced 150 balls and hit 13 fours. If he could have been dismissed early on, Ireland must have stood a chance to win in the way the Scottish innings progressed. Barrington came in and hit his first ball to mid-wicket for three to end the match with 16 balls to spare.

The Irish bowling figures were in stark contrast to those against New Zealand on the previous day. Six bowlers were used and four took wickets. White's 4.3 overs gave him figures of 2-17. Botha, McCallan and Kidd all bowled 10 overs and between them took two wickets for 119 runs, but a rate of four runs per over was not too bad.

On the next day New Zealand beat Scotland (who scored 101 all out) by eight wickets to win the triangular tournament.

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