Ireland scrape home against Scotland
The tournament opener between Ireland and Scotland at Bready turned out to be a thrilling affair with Ireland scraping home with just two wickets and three balls to spare. Chasing a target of 114 for victory, their innings had begun disastrously with four wickets falling inside the opening four overs for just 8 runs. However, the innings was pulled round by a splendid fifth wicket partnership of 75 between Kim Garth and Laura Delany.
Winning the toss, Ireland decided to make Scotland bat first on a damp morning. Leigh Kasperek and Fiona Urquhart began brightly and had put on 29 before left-armer Isobel Joyce's first delivery trapped Kasperek lbw. Urquhart, now in partnership with Kari Anderson, continued to score at a run a ball until she was drawn down the pitch by the slow bowling of Eimear Richardson and was stumped by Mary Waldron. Her attractively-compiled 29 included five boundaries.
With Urquhart's dismissal Anderson took over and steered the Scottish innings to a final tally of 114, her own contribution being an unbeaten 38 from 39 deliveries. However, Scotland would have been slightly disappointed by their failure to score more runs off the final overs bowled by Kim Garth and Laura Delany.
The Ireland bowlers all performed with nobody going for more seven runs per over.
Ireland lost a wicket off the first ball of the innings when Clare Shillington cut a ball from Nadia Wheeler straight to Kasperek at point. They still hadn't got off the mark when, in the opening over from the other end, Melissa Scott-Hayward hit a full toss from Abi Aitken to Kirstie Gordon at mid off. The third over saw the Joyce sisters both back in the pavilion as Isobel played the same shot as Shillington and suffered the same fate as Kasperek took her second catch at point. Then Cecelia gently loobed Wheeler gently to Priyanaz Chatterij at square leg. Ireland had been reduced to 8 for four in 17 deliveries.
Kim Garth and Laura Delany were now together at the crease and they gradually built up momentum in what was to be the match-winning partnership. With good running between the wickets - they were quite prepared to hit the ball directly to fielders on the edge of the ring and go for the singles - and rarely missing out on loose deliveries, they soon put the Scottish fielders under considerable pressure. As a result, a lot of misfields crept into the Scottish ground fielding and a couple of possible run outs went begging.
With just over four overs remaining, Ireland still needed 30 but seemed to be in control of the match. However, Garth fell to a fine catch by Kathryn White at cover, having played most impressively for her 43, including five boundaries, in 49 balls faced. This brought in Eimear Richardson and she immediately began putting bat to ball as Scotland's bowling started to lose its line and length. 13 runs off the 17th over seemed to have sealed the match for Ireland but then Delany and Emma Beamish fell in the space of four balls to renew Scottish hopes.
Mary Waldron soon followed to leave Ireland at 108 for eight but McCarthy and Richardson (22 from just 11 balls) saw Ireland home with a thin edge to the third man boundary.
Elation for Ireland but disappointment for Scotland, for whom Wheeler and Aitken had both taken three wickets.
- Getting ready for the toss
- The toss
- Kim Garth bowling
- Emma Beamish fields
- Turned away by Fi Urquhart
- Near miss for the run out
- Attempted hook by Leigh Kasperek
- Leigh Kasperek batting
- Lousie McCarthy and Leigh Kasperek
- Fi Urquhart scored 34
- Kim Garth goes past the edge
- Kim Garth appeals
- Enjoying the game
- Leogh Kasperek iss truck on the leg
- Huge appeal by Louise McCarthy
- Boundary for Fi Urquhart
- Isobel Joyce bowling
- Isobel Joyce delight as Brian Papworth gives the lbw
- Ireland celebrate the wicket
- Isobel Joyce
- Run out attempt goes awry
- Mary Waldron
- Kari Anderson is struck on the helmet
- Martin Gray signals wide
- Eimear Richardson takes the return
- Pulled away by Kari Anderson
- Emma Beamish gives chase
- Eimear Richardson bowling
- Cut away by Kari Anderson...
- ..and Elena Tice unable to stop the boundary
- Eimear Richardson bowling
- Driven by Fi Urquhart
- Hit away by Fi Urquhart...
- ..dropped by Clare Shillington
- Scotland squad watching
- Richardson bowling
- Swept by Kari Anderson
- Isobel Joyce has words of advice for Elena Tice
- Wide signalled by Brian Papworth
- Diving stop by Eimear Richardson
- Lofted by Fi Urquhart
- Mary Waldron stumps Fi Urquhart
- Ireland celebrate the dismissal
- Applause for Urquhart
- Cecelia Joyce gives chase
- Laura Delany waits on the return
- Attempted pull by Samantah Haggo
- All smiles as Isobel Joyce takes the catch
- Single for Kathryn White
- Laura Delany
- Third umpire Louis Fourie
- Cut away by Haggo
- Attempted run out
- Eye on the ball
- Past the outside edge
- Kari Anderson batting
- Pulled away
- Dickson is run out
- Scotland celebrate the wicket of Clare Shillington first ball
- Nadia Wheeler bowling
- Abbi Aitken bolwing to Melissa Scott-Hyaward
- Melissa Scott-Hayward miscues the full toss...
- ..and Abbi Aitken punches the air in delight as the catch is taken
- Abbi Aitken all smiles
- Abbi Aitken congratulated
- Nadia Wheeler delight
- More celebrations as Nadia Wheeler takes her third wicket
- Scotland happy as Isobel Joyce departs to leave Ireland on 8 for 4
- Kim Garth batting
- Good running between Kim Garth and Laura Delany
- Kathryn White bowling
- Cut by Laura Delany
- Driven by Kim Garth
- Leigh Kasperek bowling
- Square cut by Kim Garth
- Leigh Kasperek
- Kirstie Gordon is brought into the attack
- Another wicket for Scotland
- Swept away
- Applause for Laura Delany
- Eimear Richardson is nearly run out
- Ireland come off after securing a narrow two wicket win
- The team shake hands
- The winning Ireland squad