UAE v Ireland, ICC World Cricket League Championship, Sharjah March 20, 2013

Ireland edge closer to qualification

ESPNcricinfo staff

Ireland 199 for 4 (Porterfield 77) beat UAE 196 (Johnston 4-25) by six wickets

Ireland look set for qualification for the 2015 World Cup after comfortably beating UAE for a second time, winning by six wickets in Sharjah. The result continued their dominant campaign and gave them a six-point lead at the top of the World Cricket League Championship.

UAE were put into bat and found themselves in a spot of bother after a double-strike from Trent Johnston removed Abdul Shakoor and Faizan Asif with the score just 8. UAE did get starts from batsmen Khurram Khan (30), Swapnil Patil (30), Shaiman Anwar (39) and Mohammad Azam (34), yet none of them could capitalise and build a solid score.

Ireland's seamers took control of the innings, with Trent Johnston leading the way with 4 for 25. He was ably supported by Alex Cusack, who picked up 2 for 40, and John Mooney who finished with 2 for 46. UAE were skittled out for 196 with two balls to spare in their innings.

Ireland's chase was led by captain William Porterfield, who after losing Paul Stirling with the score at 29, put on a 48-run stand for the second wicket with Ed Joyce. Porterfield continued to anchor the innings, as he batted in partnership with Niall O'Brien, putting on 47 for the third wicket.

Porterfield fell on 77 in the 39th over with the score 138 for 4, but Gary Wilson and Kevin O'Brien remained unbeaten on 39 and 25 respectively, to finish off the chase with two overs to spare.

"It was a great performance and fantastic to get four points," Johnston said. "It was very hard to come here and get two wins from these guys. They were unbeaten in four games at home, so we probably have one foot on the plane to Australia. We haven't spoken about it yet but Simmo [Phil Simmons] will want us to go out and win those four remaining games - that's our goal."

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  • Dummy4 on March 22, 2013, 16:21 GMT

    there should be a criteria to decide test membership of the country so that countries like ireland should know what they need to become a test member. it is great to see ireland cricket moving forward. cricket need some new teams which can challenge the might of test nations. the best thing about irish cricket is that they have home grown players unlike most of associate nations this shows that there is interest in cricket in the country . test team should play more frequently with ireland. they are much above other associates and affiliates and plays better than bangladesh or zimbabwe . if proper development are made we can see them in top tear of cricket.

  • Dummy4 on March 21, 2013, 14:56 GMT

    ireland should be allowed to play more top teams and also in their nation this will not only help team ireland but also increase the interest in the game in the country. for u.a.e. team they should focus on how to have home grown players in the team .

  • Tania on March 21, 2013, 8:29 GMT

    BD instead of Ireland should have been in qualification play offs..every team will win easily against BD 2015 WC in AUS

  • Dummy4 on March 21, 2013, 8:25 GMT

    Well done team Ireland. As far as UAE is concerned. Zero for zest. Zero for enthusiasm. Zero for Hunger. Zero for sportsmanship spirit. It makes me wonder if such a team should even be playing at this level. To be playing on home ground against a team like Ireland and still fail to attract a single audience is unbelievable.They relay heavily on importing foreign first class talent anyway. I think PASSION for the game should be at the very top of the ICC requirements for playing at these levels. Unfortunately ICC counts the number of the stadiums in the country as a requirement even if the country can't afford it. Its one reason why teams like Afghanistan continue to remain an affiliate nation. I am 100% teams like Nepal, Uganda and others with home grown talent would have put a much much more interesting and entertaining show.

  • Dummy4 on March 21, 2013, 5:10 GMT

    it should always be 14 team 50 over world cup to bring teams like Ireland,Afghanistan,Netherland to Mainstream ASAP.

  • Mihir on March 21, 2013, 4:36 GMT

    Great performance from Ireland , Wish them good luck for Game against Pakistan. Hope they get win against Full Member this year in ODI.

  • Dummy4 on March 21, 2013, 2:25 GMT

    Great results - its important that Ireland continue to show dominance at this level to boost our credibility for test status plan ...I have no idea what we will do with Trent - can we not wrap him in ice for the next 4 years? He has been such an integral part of our success - his will to win and calmness has been a guiding light - a true star, I cant imagine how we will fill the gap when he retires .....

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