h1

Giant-killer Ireland undermined by Oman the Worm

March 11, 2016

Vishal Diskshit, in ESPPNcricinfo, 9 March 2016, where the title is “Joy for underdogs Oman, Ireland stunned”

Oman pulled off a stunning upset against a side that is known for upsetting stronger sides in global tournaments, shocking Ireland with a two-wicket win with two balls to spare in Dharamsala. Chasing 155 on a slow track, Oman’s fortunes swung from one extreme to the other: the openers gave them a strong start but the middle order wobbled, before an Amir Ali cameo turned things around again. They eventually sealed a historic win by taking 15 runs off a frenetic final over from Max Sorensen, who lost his lengths during a spate of full tosses that left Ireland in anguish.

MOHALI, INDIA - MARCH 02: Amir Ali of Oman poses during the official photocall for the ICC Twenty20 World on March 2, 2016 in Mohali, India. (Photo by Ritam Banerjee/IDI via Getty Images)

Amir Ali–Getty …32 in 17 balls

Oman needed 14 off the last over with three wickets in hand. The first ball from Sorenson was a shoulder-high full toss and Amir managed to steer it to the fine-leg boundary. Amir could only take a bye off the free-hit – a yorker that hit the stumps. With eight needed off five, another full toss followed – a wide one – and Ajay Lalcheta managed to edge a swipe past the keeper to the third-man boundary. Another single took it to three needed off three. The game was almost Oman’s now, but Sorensen had Amir nicking to the wicketkeeper. And then, with three needed off two balls, Sorensen bowled another high full toss that beat both batsman and keeper and raced to the boundary to set off joyous celebrations in the Oman camp.

At 95 for 5, with Oman needing 61 off 30 balls, those celebrations seemed improbable before Amir cut loose. He dispatched Sorensen over the midwicket boundary and used clever shots against the experienced Tim Murtagh in the 17th over to bring the equation down to 23 from 18. Murtagh helped Oman’s cause with a no-ball and two wides in the over and Amir then finished it with three consecutive fours to tilt the balance. Kevin O’Brien kept Ireland alive by conceding only five runs in the 18th, and Oman lost two more wickets in the 19th before that dramatic finish.

Oman’s openers Zeeshan Maqsood and Khawar Ali had put on a stand of 69 in 8.3 overs that kept the required run rate under eight per over. Maqsood peppered the leg side with one cracking shot after another and cashed in on loose deliveries with several swipes. He spanked three fours off Boyd Rankin in the third over and Khawar also switched gears after having faced several dot balls initially. Khawar attacked O’Brien with a consecutive four and six before he was bowled and O’Brien jolted Oman further with the wicket of Maqsood in his next over.

William Porterfield then switched between Paul Stirling, Sorensen and Andy McBrine who stifled Oman with 23 boundary-less balls. McBrine made things worse for Oman by collecting two wickets in four balls in the 14th over, reducing them to 90 for 5, but that brought out Amir, who proved too dangerous for Ireland.

Having opted to bat though dew was going to come into play later on, Ireland’s first few overs were filled with crunchy drives from Stirling after left-arm spinner Ajay Lalcheta started with a maiden. Stirling attacked Bilal Khan and took the score to 46 for 0 in the Powerplay as his partner Porterfield raced from 4 off 11 to 14 off 17 before the field could be spread out.

Ireland were left stunned when Maqsood took a spectacular one-handed catch at extra cover, intercepting a Stirling drive and ending his innings. Ireland needed momentum to build on but could not find any because Oman brought on one spinner after another. No. 3 Gary Wilson started accelerating with two fours in the 10th over but when Porterfield tried to do the same by stepping out, he was stumped off Khawar for 29. The Ireland batsmen picked up a boundary almost every over after that but the sluggish pitch made it tough to find them more often, even off full tosses.

Wilson worked hard for an innings of 38 that ended when his stumps were splattered by Munis Ansari, who also dismissed Niall O’Brien in the same over. Ansari had leaked 15 in his first over but he bowled the remaining three to not allow Ireland to get too far. He bowled yorkers, slower ones, and targeted the stumps to concede 22 runs off his last 18 balls. It was only in his last over, which leaked 12, that McBrine collected two fours to help Ireland past 150.

Vishal Dikshit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

World T20 – 4th match, First Round Group A
Oman won by 2 wickets (with 2 balls remaining)
9 March 2016 – night match (20-over match)
Ireland innings (20 overs maximum) R M B 4s 6s SR
View dismissal WTS Porterfield* st †Sultan Ahmed b Khawar Ali 29 53 28 3 1 103.57
View dismissal PR Stirling c Zeeshan Maqsood b Aamir Kaleem 29 31 22 6 0 131.81
View dismissal GC Wilson b Ansari 38 42 34 5 0 111.76
View dismissal NJ O’Brien c Mehran Khan b Ansari 16 16 11 1 0 145.45
View dismissal KJ O’Brien b Ansari 14 22 12 1 0 116.66
AD Poynter not out 11 21 10 0 1 110.00
AR McBrine not out 10 3 3 2 0 333.33
Extras (lb 5, w 2) 7
Total (5 wickets; 20 overs) 154 (7.70 runs per over)
Bowling O M R W Econ 0s 4s 6s
AV Lalcheta 4 1 24 0 6.00 14 4 0
Bilal Khan 4 0 32 0 8.00 10 4 0
View wickets M Ansari 4 0 37 3 9.25 13 4 2 (2w)
View wicket Aamir Kaleem 4 0 27 1 6.75 7 3 0
View wicket Khawar Ali 3 0 20 1 6.66 5 1 0
Amir Ali 1 0 9 0 9.00 3 2 0
Oman innings (target: 155 runs from 20 overs) R M B 4s 6s SR
View dismissal Zeeshan Maqsood b KJ O’Brien 38 45 33 6 0 115.15
View dismissal Khawar Ali b KJ O’Brien 34 37 26 4 2 130.76
View dismissal Jatinder Singh b Rankin 24 45 26 1 0 92.30
View dismissal Adnan Ilyas c Stirling b Sorensen 4 8 7 0 0 57.14
View dismissal Mehran Khan c Porterfield b McBrine 2 3 4 0 0 50.00
View dismissal Aamir Kaleem lbw b McBrine 0 3 2 0 0 0.00
View dismissal Amir Ali c †NJ O’Brien b Sorensen 32 34 17 5 1 188.23
View dismissal Sultan Ahmed*† run out (†NJ O’Brien) 1 2 2 0 0 50.00
AV Lalcheta not out 6 8 3 1 0 200.00
M Ansari not out 0 1 1 0 0 0.00
Extras (b 1, lb 2, w 6, nb 7) 16
Total (8 wickets; 19.4 overs) 157 (7.98 runs per over)
Bowling O M R W Econ 0s 4s 6s
TJ Murtagh 3 0 36 0 12.00 8 7 0 (1nb, 2w)
CA Young 2 0 11 0 5.50 8 1 0 (2w)
View wicket WB Rankin 3 0 23 1 7.66 7 4 0
View wickets KJ O’Brien 4 0 25 2 6.25 10 1 1
View wickets AR McBrine 3 0 15 2 5.00 8 0 1
PR Stirling 2 0 15 0 7.50 3 2 0
View wickets MC Sorensen 2.4 0 29 2 10.87 7 2 1 (2nb, 2w)

Match details


Toss – Ireland, who chose to bat
Points – Oman 2, Ireland 0
Player of the match – Amir Ali (Oman)
Umpires – CB Gaffaney (New Zealand) and NJ Llong (England)
TV umpire – S Ravi
Match referee – AJ Pycroft (Zimbabwe)
Reserve umpire – RJ Tucker (Australia)
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: