Ireland suffer defeat to Scotland at Quadrangular Series

Ireland's Kevin O'Brien
Ireland's Kevin O'Brien

Kyle Coetzer’s 74 helped Scotland beat Ireland by six wickets in yesterday’s Quadrangular T20 Series game in Oman on Friday.

Kevin O’Brien (65) and Paul Stirling [56] put on 115 for the first Irish wicket but after Mark Watt removed both, the innings lost momentum.

A disappointed Ireland Captain Paul Stirling said:

“The score was a little below par - we were positioned to get 220-plus, so it was disappointing to scrape the 180 in the end after the start that we got off to.

“Big improvements are needed in those overs from 13 to 17, we weren’t good enough at rotating the strike and finding the boundaries. That’s what cost us those 20 runs.

“We have a lot we need to improve on (before the Netherlands on Sunday), both with the bat and the ball - so pinpointing one would be wrong of me.

“We’ll re-group and do a lot of learning before the Holland game, but make sure we treat the Holland game as separate from the Scotland game.

“We’ll do our homework on the Dutch and go in there knowing what we need to do to win the game.”

Asked if Kevin O’Brien’s elevation to opener has given him a new T20 lease of life, Stirling said: “Yeah I think it has.

“It makes it slightly more easy for him earlier on with only two men out, and we’ve put a few partnerships together now, so that seems to be a positive so far.

“Hopefully he can go and kick on now - that was his first T20 fifty for Ireland so hopefully he can go and make many more now.”

For the Scots, as they chased 180-7, skipper Coetzer and George Munsey (50) produced a 109 opening partnership in 8.4 overs.

After their departures, the Scots survived a mini wobble to win with nine balls to spare.

Coetzer’s dismissal by Boyd Rankin was quickly followed by the departures of Richard Berrington and Matthew Cross to Shane Getkate, to leave the Scots 144-4.

However, Calum MacLeod steadied the innings with an unbeaten 35 - which including a closing six - while Craig Wallace finished 19 not out.

Ireland looked on course for a big total as powerful hitting from the openers saw them reach 115-0 in 11.3 overs with O’Brien striking four sixes and nine fours.

The partnership was Ireland’s biggest in the T20 format but ultimately didn’t prove enough as wickets tumbled during the remainder of the innings.

With Watt also sending Stirling and number three batsman Andrew Balbirnie back to the pavilion, the next biggest partnership in the Ireland innings was a paltry 19 as they slumped from 125-1 to 171-7.

Watt finished with figures of 3-26 as he produced arguably as crucial a contribution to Scotland’s win as his skipper.

Munsey brought up his 50 in only 26 balls before being dismissed by Getkate while Coetzer struck his 74 from just 38 deliveries.

Yesterday’s result leaves both teams with one win from their opening two games with Ireland having defeated hosts Oman on Wednesday, while Scotland lost to the Netherlands the same day.

p England Lions slumped to defeat by an innings and 68 runs inside three days in the second and final unofficial Test against India ‘A’ in Mysore.

The Lions simply had no answer for 21-year-old leg-spinner Mayank Markande, who took five for 31 as the tourists were bowled out for 180 in their second innings.

India, who made 392, had enforced the follow-on after bowling out the Lions for 144 first time around.

Ben Duckett made 50 before being trapped lbw by Jalaj Saxena, while Lewis Gregory contributed 44 lower down the order, but it was otherwise another poor batting display.

England resumed on 24 without loss but soon lost Max Holden for seven.