2nd ODI, Utrecht, June 04, 2021, Ireland tour of Netherlands
(43/50 ov, T:158) 158/2

Ireland won by 8 wickets (with 42 balls remaining)

Player Of The Match

Craig Young, Josh Little four-fors set up Ireland's series-levelling win

Half-centuries from Paul Stirling and Andy Balbirnie ensured the visitors had little trouble in chasing down the paltry total

Himanshu Agrawal
Josh Little in his delivery stride, England v Ireland, 2nd ODI, Southampton, August 1, 2020

Josh Little picked up four wickets  •  Getty Images

Ireland 158 for 2 (Balbirnie 63*, Stirling 52) beat Netherlands 157 (O'Dowd 36, Young 4-18, Little 4-39) by eight wickets
Four wickets each from Josh Little and Craig Young bundled out Netherlands for 157 before half-centuries by Paul Stirling and captain Andy Balbirnie helped Ireland level the series in the second ODI in Utrecht. Stirling and Balbirnie added 82 for the second wicket after Logan van Beek removed William Porterfield for a duck in the second over of the chase.
While Balbirnie remained unbeaten on 63 from 127 deliveries, Stirling was the more attacking partner, with five of his six fours coming in the first ten overs of Ireland's reply.
Timm van der Gugten seemed to have slowed things down but Stirling found the fence off the first ball of left-arm spinner Pieter Seelaar's third over, the 22nd of the innings. Seelaar though was to have the last laugh when he had Stirling caught at mid-on for 52 as the batter tried to hoick him across the line. But with only 67 runs left to get from more than 26 overs, Balbirnie and Harry Tector, who ended unbeaten on 30 from 59 balls, batted calmly and finished off the chase with seven overs to spare.
Earlier, the Ireland bowlers, led by Little and Young, folded the hosts up for a paltry total despite Netherlands' openers Stephan Myburgh and Max O'Dowd adding 44. Little first bowled Myburgh for 11 in the 14th over before dismissing Ben Cooper caught behind on the very next delivery. Though the hat-trick was averted, that set the tone for Little and Ireland to continue making inroads.
O'Dowd too was bowled by Little for 36 soon after before Young joined the party with the wicket of Seelaar. The collapse saw Netherlands lose their last seven wickets for just 72 runs as Young continued to hurt them with repeated strikes. Briefly, Scott Edwards looked to take his side to a competitive total but was caught behind off Young for 23, who ended with figures of 4 for 18.
And though there were fighting efforts from van Beek, Brandon Glover and Saqib Zulfiqar, who came out to bat after retiring hurt, they didn't amount to much.
Little was named the Player of the Match for his 4 for 39 as Ireland pocketed ten points to climb up to ninth in the ODI Super League table.

Himanshu Agrawal is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Ireland Innings
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