Sunny days aren't here again
Ireland were, in many ways, the story of the World Cup. But now back in gloomier climes, a defeat to India and half the side missing, reality is beginning to sink in. It isn't, as Kevin Mitchell notes in The Observer, as glamorous as their Caribbean adventures.
This was colder, more familiar, more fundamentally an old-fashioned struggle against a world-class team than their Caribbean odyssey. Shorn of nearly half of that team, through injury and the demands of the County Championship, Ireland have been reacquainted with the realities of trying to master a summer game on an often wet island with limited resources. In that context, they did well again in grinding out 193 runs and using up all their wickets and all the deliveries sent down by India on a two-paced pitch before the rain came. They are never found wanting for effort.
Siddhartha Vaidyanathan is a former assistant editor at Cricinfo