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Eimear Richardson stars in resounding win over Japan

Ireland's cricketers got their World Cup dream back on course, with a record-breaking performance by 25-year-old Eimear Richardson.

The Leinster all-rounder scored 57 with the bat before taking five wickets for just four runs in 8.3 overs as Japan were hammered by 255 runs.

Richardson's bowling return is the best ever for Ireland in a one-day game. 'I think perhaps the Japanese were a little inexperienced on how to combat the spin, especially here where there is lots of turn and bounce which can make it hard to read,' she said afterwards.

Ireland racked up another record score, 311-9 off their 50 overs, with Cecilia Joyce (64), Jill Whelan (49) and Isobel Joyce (35) also cashing in. The game was shown live in Bangladesh TV and 2.5million viewers tuned in.

A pacy opening spell from Kim Garth saw two Japanese batters dismissed by the eighth over, when Richardson came on to take control.

The off-spinner has been playing and coaching in New Zealand with Wairarapa and showed great skill to destroy the Japanese innings. 'It was a good toss to lose this morning as we wanted to have a bat', said Isobel Joyce, 'it was important we got some runs on the board as we haven't in our last couple of matches, but we did think the ball would move around early on.'

Ireland face Bangladesh in their last group game that will decide who finishes 3rd in Group B and play Sri Lanka for a place in the World Cup finals.