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Ireland tri-nation series, 2019

A review of the Ireland tri-series with West Indies and Bangladesh, 2019

Ian Callender
01-Feb-2021
John Campbell and Shai Hope put on the biggest opening stand in all ODI cricket  •  Sportsfile via Getty Images

John Campbell and Shai Hope put on the biggest opening stand in all ODI cricket  •  Sportsfile via Getty Images

1 Bangladesh 2 West Indies 3 Ireland
Bangladesh, with their full World Cup squad available, won the Dublin tri-series with something to spare. Their first game, against Ireland, was washed out, but they easily topped the table. Then, in the rain-interrupted final, they had to score 58 more runs than West Indies had in 24 overs, yet won with seven balls to spare.
No Bangladeshi reached 200 runs overall - left-hander Soumya Sarkar made 193 - but they had four of the leading nine batsmen, plus four of the top seven wicket-takers. And, in a high-scoring series, the economy-rates were particularly impressive: of those who bowled at least ten overs, only Mosaddek Hossain, Mehedi Hasan, Shakib Al Hasan and Mohammad Saifuddin went for less than five.
The pitches were slow but true. Every match was won by the side that batted second, apart from the opening game, when West Indies racked up 381 for three against Ireland, including a world-record first-wicket stand of 365 between John Campbell and Shai Hope. West Indies were without seven of their World Cup squad, still at the IPL, although there was no excuse for lethargic fielding. Hope was the outstanding batsman, with 470 runs, almost 200 more than his team-mate Sunil Ambris. Campbell cracked 179 in that huge opening stand, but missed the rest of the tournament with a back injury.
As they had shown not long before against England, West Indies had a formidable one-day batting line-up. But, of the bowlers, only Shannon Gabriel averaged under 31; five others exceeded 66.
Hosts Ireland had a similar problem. Their main batsmen all contributed, but the bowlers leaked more than 1,000 runs over three games. Andrew Balbirnie proved himself the natural successor to Ed Joyce at No. 3 with a superb 135 against West Indies - his fourth ODI century since January 2018 - although he received a demerit point for his reaction to an umpiring howler against Bangladesh.
William Porterfield dropped to No. 4 where, at the second attempt, he hit a half-century, his first for 23 international innings. But the bowlers managed only 12 wickets; Tim Murtagh and George Dockrell sent down 44 fruitless overs between them.