Captain William Porterfield revealed his pride at Ireland’s efforts during the World Cup as they narrowly missed out on qualifying for the knockout phase after defeat to Pakistan.
The associate nation once again exceeded expectations at cricket’s premier global competition, with victories over Test-playing sides West Indies and Zimbabwe taking them to the brink of a quarter-final place.
Ireland needed to avoid defeat on Sunday but despite Porterfield himself recording a century at Adelaide, Pakistan chased down a victory target of 238 with seven wickets and 23 balls to spare.
It meant that Ireland finished fifth in Pool B, behind the Windies on net run-rate only, and Porterfield believes his team can take plenty of heart from their performances in the last few weeks.
“Overall, I’m very pleased with how the lads have stuck at it,” he said at his post-match press conference.
“We’ve come in, we’ve beaten two Test nations, we’ve played some very good cricket. There are a lot of things we can take from this competition moving forward.
“For now we are disappointed. We had very high hopes for it today, we came in with a lot of confidence with how we were playing and that’s testament to where we’ve come and where we’re at as a team.
“We’ve got that confidence and belief to come out and beat anyone - it’s a great place to be. It’s a disappointed changing room now but when we do sit and reflect on it, I think we’ll be very happy with what we’ve achieved.”
After winning the toss and batting first, Porterfield led the way for Ireland with a composed 107 off 131 balls, but they could only muster 237 all out.
The total did not cause many problems for Pakistan, with Sarfraz Ahmed hitting an unbeaten 101.
Porterfield added: “We were 40 or 50 short of what would have been a very competitive total and that makes it harder during the chase as well even if they did get off to a bit of a start.
But once they did we were always trying to claw it back but you’ve got to give credit to how they played, they didn’t really let us back into the game.”