Wednesday, March 2, 2011

World Cup 2011 : England vs Ireland...

England against Ireland, today was supposed to be a regular one sided affair....a certain win for England, by most. Especially, after England's out of the world performance in their last match against India, at the same venue, one hardly gave the Irish team any chance.

Well Andrew Stauss won the toss for England & elected to bat. Carrying the good form  from their last match, both Strauss & Peiterson started middling the ball & score raced to 72 for no loss in the first 10 overs. Strauss was the first to go for 34 off 37 deliveries with score at 91 in the 14th over & Peiterson followed soon after with a well made 59 off 50 balls, with score at 111 for 2 in the 17th over. However, this did not bring down the scoring rate, & next in Trott & Bell, tore apart the Irish attack, pushing the score to 278, before Bell fell for a brilliant 81 off 86. Trott also lost his wicket soon at 288, in the 45th over. The final score soared to a healthy 327 for 8.
For Ireland, Mooney had fought hard to pick up 4 wickets for 63. Everyone watching the match, at that stage, felt it was a sure shot English victory. It looked too steep a total to chase for Ireland.
 The Irish chase started disastrously, with Captain Porterfield bowled by Anderson in the first ball, with no run on the board. Stirling, in next fought it out with Joyce & took the score to 62, before falling for a well made 34 off 28 deliveries. By the 25th over, the score was reading 111 for 5, still more than 200 runs to get, it looked an impossible target. As they say, "when the going gets tough, the tough gets going. "
This is when probably Kevin O'Brien & Cusack, took over with nerves & intent of steel. The partnership was aggressive from the word go, as 50 runs came up in 31 balls, & 100 runs in just 61. Kevin had reached his 50 in 30 balls, with 3 massive sixes. While, Strauss was running out of ideas, these two batsmen in the middle kept hitting out. Miserable fielding by the Englishmen helped the Irish cause, as catches were dropped galore, by butter finger English fielders. The bowlers, too added to the misery by maintaining a poor length & line, as the score mounted. When Cusack finally ran himself out, selflessly, it was 273 for 6 in the 42nd over. Target now, only 55 runs off 51 deliveries...very very gettable. In came Mooney, as cool as the moon, as England were still in with a chance. A few dot balls, & the pressure was mounting, when Mooney started hitting boundaries & along with Kevin took Ireland to sniffing distance of victory, when Kevin was run out. 12 runs from 12 when Kevin ran himself out. But by then history had been made. The burly Kevin O'Brien had smashed the English attack to shreds, in reaching an unbelievable 113 off just 63 balls. Century in only 50 balls....a World Cup record, previous one was by the big man Mathew Hayden. Kevin has also hit the longest six of the tournament till now, a huge 107 meters!!!
Ireland had defeated a completely bewildered England by 3 wickets with 5 deliveries still to spare. It was the highest run chase victory in a World Cup match. All one could say was Phew !! What a match..... certainly an Irish coffee delight.....strong & delectably tasty...ummmm....The Irish party would certainly go late into the morning....& why not????, after all, this is what dreams are made of......
The World Cup is now really heating up...& in good measures....

Man of the Match : Kevin O'Brein for his fantafabulous 113 for 63 deliveries, with 5 sixes.