Women's T20: Ireland frustrated as they slip to Pakistan defeat

Ireland captain Laura Delany.
Ireland captain Laura Delany.

Ireland women's captain Laura Delany was left frustrated after they slipped to a 38-run defeat at the ICC Women’s World T20 in the West Indies.

A captain’s innings from Javeria Khan, as she guided Pakistan to victory in the afternoon fixture at the Guyana National Stadium.

Javeria contributed in three substantial partnerships, as the team’s batting group continued its upward graph: They improved on the 137 they posted against India to register 139 for six, their highest score in ICC Women’s World T20s.

Speaking afterwards Delany said: “Pakistan are closely ranked to ourselves, so that was the obvious target that we were going to go after.

“It is so incredibly frustrating, because if we were professional, I wonder what the score would've been out there today. To lose by 40 runs, again, we genuinely believed we could win, so it's very disappointing.”

Pakistan scored their highest ever total in the ICC Women’s World T20 on the way to a thumping of Ireland, giving themselves the best chance of directly qualifying for the next edition of the tournament.

Javeria Khan’s unbeaten 74 formed the spine of their total, the next highest score being 21. It was the highest score by any Pakistan batter in T20Is, and her first fifty in 16 innings.

Lucy O’Reilly bowled well for Ireland, and was rewarded with three late wickets. But the damage was done by then; in the chase, only two of Ireland’s batters got into double figures, as the Pakistan spinners shared seven of the nine wickets to fall. Ireland’s challenge ended on 101 for nine, as did their best chance of automatic qualification for the ICC Women’s World T20 2020.

Pakistan’s Nashra Sandhu said: “We didn't perform too well in the previous matches, but today we had to do well because if we lost this match we couldn't qualify (directly). We would have to qualify for the T20 World Cup all over again. It was a crucial match for us to win, so we put all our efforts into winning this match.”