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August 26, 2005
Holland 56 for 3 trail Ireland 407 for 4 dec (Bray 135, Botha 97, Joyce 54, Molins 53, Gillespie 50*) by 351 runs
Ireland eased into the semi-finals of the Intercontinental Cup after their match with Holland petered out into a tame draw, with the poor weather which had washed out the first day returning to bring a premature end to a game which had long since ceased to have any meaning.
Ireland's powerful batting performance yesterday had ended any hopes Holland had of reaching the last four, and they had to be content with some gentle batting practice. Resuming at 56 for 3, they soon lost Eric Szwarczynski but then Ryan ten Doeschate (84) and Alexei Kervezee (46*) put on 115 for the fifth wicket to ensure that at least they were saved the embarrassment of having to follow on. By the time ten Doeschate was caught behind off Andre Botha, the game had meandered into insignificance, and the return of the rain was not unwelcome.
Holland have suffered appallingly from the weather. Their first match at home to Scotland was washed out, and almost half of this game fell victim to the elements, making it almost impossible for them to mount any serious challenge for a semi-final berth. What was, on paper, the strongest of the four zonal groups in the tournament was reduced to a meteorological lottery.
But that does not ignore the fact that Ireland rallied superbly to defeat the fancied Scots, and then clinically batted Holland out of this game knowing that a draw was all they needed to book a place in Namibia. They will face the United Arab Emirates at Windhoek in a three-day game starting on October 23.
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