Scotland Under-19s 133 for 6 (Bailwal 31, Dockrell 3-12) beat Ireland Under-19s 132 for 9 (van der Merwe 43, Berry 41, Bailwal 4-27) by four wickets
Scotland pulled off a last-ball win against Ireland in Belfast on the opening day of the European Under-19 Championships, while Netherlands and Jersey registered easy victories against Guernsey and Denmark respectively.
The hosts elected to bat in a fixture reduced to 26-overs-a-side due to rain, and began cautiously before losing Ryan Hunter to Patrick Sadler. Things looked up when Jason van der Merwe and Richard Berry combined in a second-wicket stand of 61 in 12 overs. That set the platform for the innings, but the middle order failed to take off as wickets fell in a clutch following van der Merwe's dismissal. Aman Bailwal was the most successful bowler, scalping 4 for 27, as eight wickets fell for 55, leading to Ireland's final score of 132.
Scotland began steadily with a 35-run opening stand before losing their way against spin as Ireland snapped three wickets in the space of 12 runs. George Dockrell posed a lot of problems in his spell of 3 for 12, before Bailwal came to the visitors' rescue again. He repaired the damage along with Anjan Luthra who helped him raise 51. The situation remained tricky when Bailwal fell for 31, with Scotland 35 runs away with 29 balls remaining. Things became tighter as two more wickets fell and it was down to Samuel Page and Peter Ross to get the final 13 runs off 8 balls. They brought it down to two off the final ball - a low full toss dabbed to deep square leg, for a scrambled couple before the fielder could return the ball to the bowler's end.
Jersey Under-19s 93 for 2 (Stevens 38*) beat Denmark Under-19s 90 (Stevens 4-12) by eight wickets
In Warringstown Jersey made short work of Denmark, strolling to an eight-wicket win with 98 balls to spare. Denmark elected to bat in the 33-overs-a-side match and things went pear-shaped quickly as only two batsmen managed to register double-figure scores. Left-arm spinner Ben Stevens enjoyed himself with the ball, scalping 4 for 13 in seven overs and he was supported well by the rest of the cast as Denmark folded for 90. Jersey suffered a minor hiccup in the chace when they lost Charles Perchard cheaply before Daniel McAviney and Aidan McGuire calmed the nerves with a 31-run stand. Stevens then came out to cap a memorable match for him with a stroke-filled 38 off 28 balls to deal the deal in the 17th over.
Netherlands Under-19s 210 for 6 (Tewarie 71, Loggers 41) beat Guernsey Under-19s 99 (van den Brandeler 4-5, Tewarie 3-13)
Netherlands flexed their muscle in a strong all-round effort as Guernsey succumbed by 11 1 runs in another rain-affected fixture, in Carrickfergus. Guernsey were made to pay after inviting Netherlands to bat as openers Vinoo Tewarie and Sverre Loggers assaulted the bowling in an aggressive opening stand of 69 off 45 balls. Loggers fell for 41 off 35 balls, but there was no let up from Tewarie who smashed four sixes in his 71. The middle order failed to capitalize as Dane Mullen pulled things back with a spell of 2 for 28, but his good work was undone by a whirlwind finish thanks to Emile van den Burg, who smacked 38 runs off 16 balls inclusive of four sixes as Netherlands finished at 210.
Guernsey's chase fizzled out after early aggression from Adam Martel who scored a run-a-ball 20. There-after Philip van den Brandeler and Tewarie made regular inroads as Guernsey succumbed one run short of three figures. van der Brandeler's pace and movement earned him dream figures of 4 for 5 in six overs, three of them maidens. Tewarie spun out the tail with 3 for 13 to go with his batting heroics.