ICC Trophy Round Three round-up July 4, 2005

Ireland on brink of World Cup

Cricinfo staff

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Group A

Ed Joyce acknowledges the crowd after his second hundred of the competition took Ireland to the verge of the 2007 World Cup © ICC
Ireland recovered from a batting blip against UAE to move to the verge of qualification for the World Cup 2007 with a two-wicket victory at Stormont. Ireland overcame their toughest challenge to date thanks to an unbeaten century from Ed Joyce, the tournament's leading run scorer. UAE posted their highest total of the event. Khurram Khan and Javed Ismail both contributed half-centuries to a competitive 230 all out. Ireland's reply began disastrously as an inspirational opening spell from Ali Asad Abbas had them reeling at 23 for 4. However, Joyce steadied the Irish reply and he found and able ally in Trent Johnston. The pair put on 122 for the fifth wicket before Johnston was bowled for 67. Ireland scraped home with one ball to spare as Paul Mooney scrambling the single required.

Bermuda threw Group A wide open with a comfortable 93-run victory over Denmarkat Cliftonville. The Danes, who had won their opening two games, allowed Bermuda to compile a solid 249 for 8 and never looked like getting close in their reply. Frederik Klokker, the century-scoring hero of Denmark's victory over USA, was the third man out with the score on seven and only a late 51 from Thomas Hansen added a degree of respectability to Denmark's total of 156 all out.

Uganda picked up its first victory of the tournament at Lurgan, with an Independence Day rout of USA by six wickets. The result leaves USA with only an outside chance of making the top five - and therefore the World Cup - just a year after qualifying for the Champions Trophy. Steve Massiah made an unbeaten 108 as USA made a useful total of 236 for 7. But Uganda had few problems knocking off the runs, after an opening stand of 152 between Joel Olwenyi (76) and Bibodi Nehal (68). USA's bowlers struggle to maintain any pressure and Hamza Saleh guided Uganda home striking an unbeaten 45 with 14 balls to spare.

Group B

Holland celebrate as they close in on victory over Namibia © ICC
Holland claimed its third consecutive 2005 victory with a six-wicket defeat of Namibia. Namibia looked to be making steady progress towards a good total until Edgar Schiferli, Holland's strike bowler, was brought back into the attack. He took three crucial wickets in one over, to send Namibia crashing from 148 for 5 to 150 for 8 at a crucial stage of their innings. Bas Zuiderent and Tom de Grooth provided Holland with the perfect platform with a century partnership. De Grooth was first out for 55 but by then the target of 189 was already in sight. With Namibia's bowlers struggling to control the white ball - they bowled 24 wides - Zuiderent carefully steered his side to victory, finishing the match with 3.1 overs to spare on 65 not out.

Scotland made light work of Papua New Guinea at Shaw's Bridge in a match that was reduced to 44 overs due to heavy overnight rain. John Blain and Dougie Brown both picked up four wickets as PNG were bowled out for 90 in 35 overs. Seven of the PNG batsmen were dismissed leg-before-wicket. Scotland took only 19 overs to reach the target but PNG will take some consolation from claiming five Scottish wickets.

Oman's highest score of the tournament almost caught out a Canada side determined to try and improve its net-run-rate. With the flashing blade of John Davison leading the way, Canada looked like reaching their target of 184 within 30 overs. But once Davison was dismissed for 74 off 53, Canada stuttered to a two-wicket victory in the 42nd over.

The penultimate round of group games takes place on Tuesday.