Surrey crash to humiliating defeat against Ireland
Ireland 262 for 5 (Molins 58, Bray 52) beat Surrey 261 (Brown 67, White 3-43) by five wickets
Surrey's abysmal start to the season has continued - today they were embarrassingly bundled out of the C&G Trophy by Ireland in Dublin. After setting a total of 261 on a rain-truncated first day, and despite fielding an attack consisting of six Test bowlers, Surrey's challenge was brushed aside, and Ireland won with a full ten balls and five wickets in hand.
On current form, however, it was not that much of an upset. Surrey are in disarray after a winter of upheaval, while Ireland are now unbeaten in their last ten matches. Mind you, they have only once before beaten a county side in a competitive game - Surrey's arch-rivals Middlesex, who lost at the same venue in 1997, again over two days.
Ireland's batsmen made contributions all down the order, to complement their consummately professional performance in the field on Wednesday. They were given the perfect start by Jeremy Bray and their captain, Jason Molins, who both scored half-centuries in an opening stand of 103. Molins was particularly fluent in his pursuit of victory, cracking seven fours in a 57-ball 58, before being bowled by Azhar Mahmood.
Ireland's South African import, Andre Botha, kept up the momentum with a 22-ball 17, but the writing was already on the wall for Surrey. That much was apparent from the amount of extras they were conceding. The final tally was 24, including 15 wides and six no-balls. Ireland, for their part, sent down just four wides in the entire Surrey innings.
Mahmood and Martin Bicknell briefly revived Surrey's hopes, when they dismissed Gerald Dros and Peter Gillespie in the space of two runs (223 for 5). But Andrew White and Kyle McCallan sprinted to the finish, rattling off the remaining 39 runs in just six overs.
It was just deserts for Ireland, whose spirited efforts in the field on Wednesday had set up the victory chance. At 39 for 0 after five overs of the match, Surrey had been scenting a clean kill, with Ally Brown in especially belligerent form. But the 17-year-old Eion Morgan took a fine catch on the long-on boundary to dismiss Brown for 67, and the innings subsided, with Botha and White both picking up three wickets.