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Match Report

Gary Wilson stroked six boundaries in a top score of 45 as Ireland strolled to a five wicket win in the first game of their three match T20 international series against Papua New Guinea in Townsville.

Chasing 93 to win, Ireland lost Paul Stirling and Niall O'Brien for just three apiece, and skipper William Porterfield (15) followed soon after to leave Ireland on 30 for 3.

Wilson though was at his fluent best dominating a fourth wicket stand of 53 with Kevin O'Brien, facing just 33 balls for his 45. His knock took Ireland to the brink of victory before being well caught by Asad Vala off the bowling of Charles Amini with just nine needed.

Andrew Poynter scored just five on his first appearance of the tour to give the contest a less one-sided feel than it actually was, but a trademark soaring six from Kevin O'Brien (19*) brought proceedings to a close just three balls later.

Earlier in the day a superb performance from the Ireland attack, backed up by an athletic fielding effort meant Papua New Guinea were never able to build any momentum in their innings.

Max Sorensen (1-15) set the tone with a maiden in the first over of the day and the Irish never relinquished their grip on the contest thereafter.

There were two wickets apiece for Kevin O'Brien (2-10), Craig Young (2-15) and Andy McBrine (2-17), with George Dockrell (1-10) the other successful bowler.

Sese Bau top scored for the Pacific Islanders with a modest 22, while Charles Amini (21) and Assad Vala (11) were the only other players to reach double figures in their total of 92 for 9.

"It felt good when I was out there," said top scorer Gary Wilson. "I've been hitting the ball nicely so hopefully I can continue that form for the rest of the tour and beyond.

"It was a comfortable chase in the end, even though we lost a couple more wickets than we should have at the end of the innings.

"The bowlers set the tone very well, hitting the deck hard. The pitch was a little two-paced, so getting them for a low score was key."

The teams play their second match in the three-match series on Sunday 7, with the final game in the series taking place on Tuesday 9.


(Cricket Ireland)