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Wisden Cricinfo staff
June 17, 2004
Ireland 295 for 4 (Bray 71, Molins 66, O'Brien 58*) beat West Indians 292 for 7 (Bravo 100*) by 6 wickets
Ireland followed their victory against Surrey earlier this season with an even more impressive win against the West Indians by six wickets at Belfast. After a century from Dwayne Bravo helped his side to a more-than-competitive 292 for 7, Jeremy Bray and Jason Molins set the platform before Niall O'Brien led Ireland to victory with more than three overs to spare.
Chasing 293 to win, Ireland got off to an impressive start when Molins and Bray put on 111 for the opening stand. The West Indian attack eventually got those two out, but it wasn't enough as O'Brien, with help from Peter Gillespie and Andrew White, guided Ireland home with an unbeaten 58 to complete a harrowing warm-up game for the West Indians, in which Ravi Rampaul went for 74 from only seven overs.
It wasn't quite as embarrassing as the game in 1969, when West Indies were bowled out by Ireland for only 25, but it was not what Brian Lara and his team would have wanted ahead of next week's NatWest Series.
A defeat for the West Indians seemed unlikely after Bravo had rescued them with the bat. He smacked an unbeaten hundred from just 65 balls, clubbing nine fours and three sixes, and added 131 for the sixth wicket with Ridley Jacobs. Their partnership bailed the team out after they had been reduced to 133 for 5.
The West Indians, who were unconvincing in their 96-run victory in Wednesday's first match, once again suffered a tricky time at the top of their innings. After winning the toss and batting, they lost Shivnarine Chanderpaul for 2, caught behind off Trent Johnston, before Chris Gayle fell in identical fashion for 31.
Devon Smith and Ricardo Powell then added 72 for the third wicket, only for three quick wickets to fall in the space of 15 runs, including two at the same score to John Mooney (133 for 5). But Jacobs dropped anchor and Bravo teed off, as the innings gained momentum.
Mooney eventually claimed his third wicket when Jacobs was caught by Bray for 40, before Andre Botha chipped in with the big wicket off Lara, who had dropped himself down to No. 8 following yesterday's century.
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