Ireland v Netherlands, World T20, Group B, Sylhet

Netherlands stun rivals to qualify

The Report by Kanishkaa Balachandran

March 21, 2014

Comments: 208 | Text size: A | A

Netherlands 193 for 4 (Myburgh 63, Cooper 45, Barresi 40*) beat Ireland 189 for 4 (Poynter 57, Porterfield 47) by six wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Wasn't thinking about merely winning - Myburgh

Netherlands pulled off one of the best chases in Twenty20 cricket, chasing 190 in 13.5 overs to break the hearts of their opponents Ireland and Group B rivals Zimbabwe, who were watching with bated breath, to progress to the Super 10 of the World T20. Netherlands needed to achieve the formidable target in 14.2 overs to vault from No. 3 to No. 1 in the group on net run-rate, which meant they had to bat in high gear throughout.

Stephan Myburgh gave Netherlands belief that they could pull it off with an electric fifty; Tom Cooper proved the team had the back-up after Myburgh departed, and the final flourish was delivered by Wesley Barresi, who ensured qualification with a massive six over midwicket with three balls left.

After Cooper blazed six sixes in his 45, he pulled a short one from Tim Murtagh to Kevin O'Brien at deep square leg, giving Ireland a lifeline when they desperately needed one. Netherlands were anyway coasting towards the target, needing 29 off 52 balls but merely attaining it wasn't going to bring a smile to their faces. What mattered was if they could attain it in the next 18 balls. Only three more runs were scored when that Murtagh over ended, piling on the anxiety for Netherlands.

The first three balls in the next over were uneventful for Netherlands but it all changed when Barresi edged O'Brien to the third-man boundary. Two balls later, Ben Cooper siphoned off six more from the runs required with a blow over deep midwicket. Ireland needed to keep them under control for the next eight deliveries but Murtagh and Ireland hadn't yet seen all of the carnage.


Netherlands' players celebrate after qualifying for the Super 10 stage, Ireland v Netherlands, World T20, First Round Group B, Sylhet, March 21, 2014
Netherlands left more than one team stunned on the night © ICC
Enlarge

Barresi made room and smashed the second ball of the over over the sightscreen, making the equation a more manageable seven off six balls. He then clobbered a four over extra cover, bringing it down to less than a run a ball for the first time. A length ball was then biffed over deep midwicket and Netherlands had pulled off the improbable, leading to wild celebrations, having jumped from third place to first in the group.

Netherlands signaled their intent from the first ball of the chase, when the captain Peter Borren went on his knee and swept to the fine-leg boundary. The real carnage began in the second over when Myburgh took on the offspinner Andy McBrine with four sixes, in an over that wnt for a soul-destroying 25. Myburgh targeted the on side, sending the first miles over long-on and the next three over deep midwicket, each longer and higher than the other.

If McBrine needed a shoulder to cry on, he could have picked any one of the five other bowlers who had the misfortune of bowling to Netherlands' determined batsmen. Alex Cusack was the next to be on the receiving end of Myburgh's blows with three consecutive sixes, bringing up the fifty in just 3.1 overs. The manic opening stand between Borren and Myburgh came to an end when George Dockrell took a stunning catch running backwards, sending back Borren. Netherlands' 91 at the end of six overs was the world record for the highest Powerplay score. It wasn't the only record they broke though.

Myburgh's fifty off 17 balls equaled the second-fastest in T20s, but he fell not too long after that, when he pulled Dockrell straight to deep midwicket. In the following over, Ireland got another breakthrough thanks to another impressive running-backwards catch under pressure by the captain William Porterfield, sending back Logan van Beek. The edge was suddenly with the Irish but the relief was only temporary.

Ironically, just moments after those two brilliant bits of catching, Ed Joyce put down a sitter in the deep. A powerful reverse sweep from Tom Cooper went straight to deep cover and Joyce fluffed it running forward.That drop didn't just burn a hole in their pockets - it set their pants on fire.

Two balls later, Tom Cooper hit the helpless bowler Dockrell over deep midwicket and in his following over, suffered further humiliation, giving away the third hat-trick of sixes in the innings. Tom Cooper, who was controversially rushed to the squad from Australia shortly before the first match, showed why he's considered their best batsman. He launched four sixes in the over, mostly over the on side. Dockrell tossed it up but it didn't induce the false shot as Tom Cooper middled them all.

After that over, the equation came down to 33 needed off 20 to qualify and the Zimbabweans, who had kept their qualification hopes alive with a hurried victory against UAE, would have begun to twitch on their seats. Had Netherlands taken longer than 14.2 overs, the Zimbabweans' effort would have been worth it.

The pressure began to tell on the fielders when the cover fielder made a schoolboy error, conceding a boundary. Murtagh finally had some success when he bowled a short one on seeing Tom Cooper advance and got him to pull to deep square leg. There were no boundaries scored off the next seven balls, but when Barresi edged O'Brien to third man, Netherlands were feeling good again and there was no looking back. By the end of the game, Netherlands had hit 19 sixes in the innings, a world record - the combined 30 sixes in the game was another record.

All the Ireland bowlers were made to look like helpless schoolboys whose lunch money was snatched by bullies. They might have felt that the match and qualification was rightfully theirs when they posted 189. Porterfield led the early assault with a 32-ball 47, skipping down the track and chipping the ball over the infield. Netherlands had used as many as seven bowlers in the first ten overs as Porterfield and Joyce set the platform for a big score. The fireworks came from Andrew Poynter and O'Brien as Ireland hit 118 from the last ten overs. Poynter was dropped by Michael Swart early in the innings but he went on to compile his own hat-trick of sixes, off Swart, on his way to a fifty off just 27 balls. O'Brien cleared the ropes with ease, with lofted drives down the ground.

At the end of the innings, Poynter was asked if 189 was enough and he replied, "I'll tell you after the game." On paper, Ireland were the favourites to qualify. Only few would have expected the first innings to be reduced to a side-show.

Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by yohandf on (March 23, 2014, 9:03 GMT)

Fantastic plays by associates . T20 is the format which they can compete best with full members and they proved it . Netherland qualified annihilating Ireland at the last moment and they deserved with the intensity shown there . Ireland bit unlucky but they ll get their chances . Nepal opened every bodies eyes . Afghans below par with the way lost to Bangladesh but they ll come hard . Hong kong cherished their hopes again with tremendous win vs Bangladesh . UAE need to improve a lot . Bnagladesh survived with home advantage and experienced players . Zimbabwe succumbed . So in next ICC WT20 , i want more chances to associates to challenge full members . i want three lowest ranked full members to play with 6 associates in three groups of 3 and 3 table toppers to advance .That is the way to go . hail WT20 .

Posted by Jonah58 on (March 22, 2014, 14:07 GMT)

@gagg the dutch team that won yesterday was little different to the team we (Ireland) play against last year and beat in the WCL we had no issues with their 'origins' then why should that amazing performance make any difference now? That was one of the most outstanding games of cricket I have ever watched even if I am still reeling from the result. i am heartily disappointed we did not qualify but if that match does not prove to the powers that be that there is an urgent need to ensure that Affiliate and Associate teams need the continued support and funding from this new big 3 power grab then nothing ever will. I defy any neutral cricket lover to tell me that they did not find that game a spectacle and on par with or better the entertainment provided by any 'full member' in the last 5 years. Well done to the Dutch now go and do us proud in the main event.

Posted by zarasochozarasamjho on (March 22, 2014, 13:43 GMT)

Completely lost for words - for once; congrats to Netherlands for such an amazing performance. Even the best batting side would have struggled to score 190 - in 20 overs; let alone 13.5 overs - against any international side. Thanks to Ireland too, for their contribution for this amazing spectacle.

Posted by   on (March 22, 2014, 11:56 GMT)

what a match

Posted by RAYKAY on (March 22, 2014, 11:42 GMT)

Well done Netherland, it does not matter where you were all born, you represented a nation who accepted you and made you sons of their soil, the Netherland saw you fit enough to represent them and you did that with the cricketing world watching. Stand up tall and continue with pride to hold the Netherland flag flying high. The English team have player like Lumb, Morgan, and Jordan who represent England. When these big football club win the Champion league with players from all over the globe the reports states the country they are from.

Posted by TheMysteryMan on (March 22, 2014, 11:09 GMT)

@Gagg What does not being born in Netherlands have to do anything with the team performance. Afterall all of them have their direct blood relatives from the land.

And if we are going into detail, where did ancestors of all white people in South Africa or Australia / NZ come from? They all came from Europe.

They play as a team for Netherland and people are praising that team. That team still faces way greater challange in the form of resources and funding than other established teams. And they represent country where cricket is still in infancy. For them to put on a show that they did was impressive. It was a world record setting match in world up. It was exceptional hitting. Even teams like Australia and India would have been praised for that performance. Why not them?

Posted by TheMysteryMan on (March 22, 2014, 9:09 GMT)

@Gagg What does not being born in Netherlands have to do anything with the team performance. Afterall all of them have their direct blood relatives from the land.

And if we are going into detail, where did ancestors of all white people in South Africa or Australia / NZ come from? They all came from Europe.

They play as a team for Netherland and people are praising that team. That team still faces way greater challange in the form of resources and funding than other established teams. And they represent country where cricket is still in infancy. For them to put on a show that they did was impressive. It was a world record setting match in world up. It was exceptional hitting. Even teams like Australia and India would have been praised for that performance. Why not them?

Posted by v8v8v8 on (March 22, 2014, 8:42 GMT)

@Gagg - Two players of that match day 11 are of dutch birth. BUT everyone loves a underdog - Let us rather ask "How many of the dutch players are full time cricket professionals?" - this is why we love the associate nations, they appeal to the weekend cricketing warrior in all of us.

P.s. Of course you could ask how a Full member nation like England had 3 South African's (Strauss, KP, Trott) playing in their test squad recently. And looking rather weaker now they're all retired...?

Posted by   on (March 22, 2014, 8:40 GMT)

Never day Die - Weldone NETHERLANDS!

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