Ireland v England, Only ODI, Dublin August 25, 2011

Dernbach delivers in rain-dented contest


England 201 for 8 (Trott 69, Morgan 59) beat Ireland 117 for 8 (Dernbach 3-30) by 11 runs - D/L
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

England's new-look one-day team exacted a measure of revenge for their predecessors who were vanquished in that thrilling World Cup fixture in Bangalore, as Ireland's spirited bid for back-to-back victories against their nearest neighbours was thwarted first by the weather and then by a canny diet of slower balls and yorkers from Jade Dernbach and Ravi Bopara.

In what effectively became a match within a match after two lengthy rain delays had eaten 35 overs out of the day's allocation, Ireland were left needing 87 from the final ten overs of their run-chase, having gone into the second interruption on 42 for 2 after 13, following the early loss of both openers to Steven Finn.

In what looked suspiciously like a tactical decision, Will Porterfield ran himself out off the second ball of the resumption, whereupon the hero of Bangalore, Kevin O'Brien, monstered consecutive sixes off the debutant spinner, Scott Borthwick, to give a patient Dublin crowd the treat they had all turned up to see, and to give England an early reminder of the damage he could cause, following that seminal 113 from 63 balls at the World Cup.

While O'Brien was at the crease, anything seemed possible, as he bashed along to 26 from 15, with the pick of his strokes being an inside-out drive through extra cover off Samit Patel. However, Eoin Morgan, captaining England for the first time against his former countrymen, swiftly pulled his spinners from the attack, and turned to the seam variations of Dernbach and Bopara to regain control of the match.

The move was rewarded with three key wickets in as many overs. First, Niall O'Brien misread a slower-ball bouncer from Dernbach and holed out to deep square leg for 13; then Nigel Jones was exquisitely cleaned up by Bopara, whose back-of-the-hand delivery trimmed his bails as he went through his shot too soon. Kevin O'Brien added one more boundary to his tally when he picked a Dernbach slowie and pulled it through midwicket, but he wasn't ready for the change-up in pace, and was comprehensively yorked in the same over.

John Mooney, the unsung hero of that remarkable night in Bangalore, revived Ireland's hopes with a first-ball four and a crashing six over midwicket, but he too succumbed to Dernbach as he got underneath a lofted drive, and picked out Ben Stokes on the straight boundary.

With 12 balls remaining and 23 required, Patel returned to the attack with an exceptional over that went for four runs and included the wicket of Gary Wilson to an optimistic swipe, which left Dernbach to close out the game for figures of 3 for 30 in five overs, all but one of which came in the closing ten-over bash.

The frenetic finale was entirely at odds with the soporific start to the contest, in which Jonathan Trott - the only survivor of that Bangalore beating - dropped anchor in his habitual (and opinion-splitting) style to top-score for England with 69 from 105 balls. Morgan provided a spark of tempo against his former countrymen with a 65-ball 59, but Ireland's bowlers bowled with excellent discipline on a sluggish surface to restrict their opponents to 201 for 8 in 42 overs.

In showery conditions reminiscent of England's lucky escape in Belfast two years ago, run-scoring proved hard to master on a two-paced surface. Though he once again batted deep within his bubble in his first England appearance since he damaged his shoulder during the second Test against India at Trent Bridge, even Trott appeared frustrated with his progress at times, and when rain interrupted after 12.1 overs, he had reached 19 off 34 balls.

England lost two early wickets in that time. Craig Kieswetter's struggles against the moving ball continued in an unconvincing 26-ball 14, while James Taylor, the highly-rated young Leicestershire batsman, managed 1 from eight balls on debut before a short ball from Rankin got big on him, and he top-edged a loose pull to Wilson at midwicket.

Morgan's inventiveness, and a decent flurry from the tail, ensured England scraped over the 200-mark, but the rain prevented a proper contest from panning out. Given that Kevin O'Brien had been the one batsman all day to really get a grip of the surface, Ireland may well rue the overs that got away.

Andrew Miller is UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • david on August 28, 2011, 17:39 GMT

    jonesy2 tell us how u know this about county accenst , do u spend alot of time in county team dressing rooms i take it. .as per the aussie accent i was over there for 3 month 6 years ago and when i came back. they thought i was croc dundee. dpk

  • david on August 27, 2011, 16:43 GMT

    funny how different sports and fans except similar situations on watching today ireland v england at rugby union and rugby league wigan v leeds. how many of the players are of different nationality playing for the teams granted one is an international game and the other a club match but still the same situation. guys can play club rugby some for as little as 2 years and can change countries. but guys in cricket in england can come over as boys or as young men play 4/5years some with english parents and be selected for a junior england side, with no comments. then selected for a full england side and no comment. then start winning, win the ashes, then go top of the world rankings. then low and behold theres comments from all and sundry.not only on this page topic but most that has to do with england. funny old world. dpk

  • Mark on August 26, 2011, 11:36 GMT

    Good to see Associate nations like Ireland doing well despite the loss. England's a good cricket team these days, but Ireland definitely has a dedicated small cricket community there that plays cricket with a lot of passion and spirit. I wonder if ICC gave test status to say Ireland instead of Bangladesh where Ireland would be now? Although Bangladesh has a lot of promise in 10 years they haven't done much. Ireland on the other hand has as an associate cricket nation can be justly proud of their performances. Good luck Ireland for the future.

  • Duncan on August 26, 2011, 11:30 GMT

    @jonesy - so Khwaja is pretty much the same as Strauss then? And excuse me, England have only won 2 series??? They've won 8 of their last 9 series, which has included Australia twice as well as the other 3 sides in the top 5. That is why they are top. Let's see if Australia or South Africa can put together a similar run in the next few years.

  • Dummy4 on August 26, 2011, 11:17 GMT

    @Jonesy2 England only won 2 series to go top of the rankings? Did you only learn to count at the start of the Sri Lanka series? Since the loss in WI in 2009 England have 2 series wins against Australia, 1 vs Pakistan and 2 vs Banglandesh, 1 vs Sri Lanka, 1 vs India, 1 vs WI and a draw with SA. Haven't played NZ for ages but we beat them home and away when we last did.

  • Chris on August 26, 2011, 10:36 GMT

    @seanor - "SA's loss"? You really think Strauss, Dernbach, Prior should go and play for SA, despite living here and having played all their cricket here? Surely then you'd just accuse SA of fielding players raised in England - or would you prefer that none of them was playing cricket at all so as to avoid such dilemmas. Grow up.

  • PETER on August 26, 2011, 10:28 GMT

    @jonesy2: "...after all they only won 2 series...". Hahahahaha. You simply have no idea have you?

    Going back to the year 2000, England - Currently the No1 test team - have played 43 test series, winning 25, drawing 7 losing only 11. You can't seriously think that the No1 test ranking comes off the back of 2 series wins against India and the Aussies? However, I realise that England pounded both of these weaker teams in to the dirt which would warrant elevation to the top spot after only 9 matches [England 7 - Ind/Aus1 + 1 draw], scoring 5,673 runs in only 13 innings [we kept declaring you see, or only having to bat once!], but these things are hard-earned. Perhaps the next time Australia visit England, they should only get 3 matches at the smaller grounds given their poor recent record. I'm sure you'll agree that this is only fair.

  • Pelham on August 26, 2011, 10:23 GMT

    @jonesy2: What do you mean by saying that England "only won 2 series". England have won their last six Test series, and eight out of nine since they last lost one. It is true that if South Africa win all of their next five Test matches, they will overtake England as number one in January before England can play again.

  • Merv on August 26, 2011, 10:08 GMT

    Irish playing the Irish ... Really why cant England mount their won cricket team with the 'World Eleven" thing? It must take some of the gloss off their achievements for their fans.

  • Bryn on August 26, 2011, 9:28 GMT

    YorkshirePudding -------- nobody is complaining, just laughing at england's lack of depth and quality cricketers who actually have english accents. usman came to aus when he was 4 or something, he has a very aussie accent, same cant be said for half of the players in county cricket and the "england" team. hey but well done on beating a minnow like ireland even if you had to rely on rain or else there would have been a second loss to ireland in less than 6 months. ouch. ah i suspect this stay at the top of the test match rankings will be short lived, after all they only won 2 series, if thats all you have to do to be at the top of the rankings then i suspect australia or south africa will be there in a few months. hopefully australia but we will see.

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