Friday, May 24, 2024

Ireland race to six-wicket win in opening Women’s T20 World Cup qualifier

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UAE 105-9 (20 overs)

Ireland 106-4 (15.2 overs)

Ireland won by 6 wickets

EIMEAR RICHARDSON DELIVERED a player of the match performance as Ireland opened their Women’s T20 World Cup qualification campaign with a six-wicket win against the United Arab Emirates on Thursday.

Richardson took two wickets for 14 runs as Ireland held their opponents to a 105-9 total.

And the all-rounder finished with 22 not out with the bat as Ireland chased down their target with 23 balls to spare.

UAE started promisingly with Theertha Satish and Khushi Sharma combining for 46 runs for the second wicket, bringing up a total of 64/2 just before the 10-over mark.

But a disastrous middle order collapse saw them lose their next five wickets for just 13 runs, handing the initiative to Ireland.

Chasing 106, Ireland were on the front foot immediately thanks to an opening partnership of 52 from Amy Hunter and Gaby Lewis before Lewis was caught by Satish off Kavisha Egodage’s delivery.

A mid-innings wobble saw Ireland lose Hunter, Laura Delany and Rebecca Stokell in the space of 13 balls to leave them on 68/4 before Orla Prendergast (22 not out) and Richardson steadied the ship to see them home.

Ireland need a top-two finish in Group B to qualify for the semi-finals, with the two tournament finalists earning a place at the World Cup in Bangladesh in September and October.

Ireland return to action on Monday when they take on Zimbabwe.

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