Ireland ends Pakistan's World Cup sojourn
Former champions Pakistan are out of the World Cup following a shock defeat at the hands of underdogs Ireland, who won the Group D match by 3 wickets, reports Anjali Behl.cricket Updated: Apr 20, 2007 01:41 IST
Former champions Pakistan are out of the World Cup following a shock defeat at the hands of underdogs Ireland. Chasing a meagre target of 133 runs, Ireland beat the beleaguered Pakistan team in the World Cup Group D match at Sabina Park on Saturday.
Playing their first World Cup, Ireland sent an strong message to the critics by this giant-killing to set an impression in the world if not completely waive off their 'underdog' status.
Ireland skipper Trent Johnston won the toss and decided to field. Looking to capitalise on the inconsistent Pakistan squad, Ireland ran through the Pakistani batting line-up to confound the opponents to a deplorable state.
Pakistan lost opener Mohammad Hafeez in the maiden over of the match. Dave Langford-Smith removed the former at four. Next, Boyd Rankin got lucky to dismiss ace batsman Younis Khan for a duck.
In the 13th over, captain Trent Johnston provided his side with another big breakthrough when he dismissed Mohammad Yousuf for 15.
Andre Botha turned out lucky for the Irish side claiming two prized scalps of skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq and Imran Nazir. The former could not add much to the total while the latter hit 24.
Shoaib Malik was caught and bowled by Niall O'Brien in the 21st over at 9.
Johnston grabbed a superb catch at midwicket to upset Azhar Mahmood off Rankin's delivery. The duo came together to scalp Kamran Akmal at 27.
Pakistan's only concern at that moment was to bat right to the end of their 50th overs. But that seemed dubious just as the ninth wicket fell in the beginning of the 44th over. McCallan dismissed Mohammad Sami for 12 runs.
Kamran Akmal remained the highest scorer of the Pakistan innings with just 27 runs.
Mohammad Sami provided the much-needed breakthrough to Pakistan trapping two batsmen before the wicket. His first victim was Jeremy Bray (3), followed shortly by Eoin Morgan (2).
Porterfield buckled under a delivery off Mohammad Hafeez in the 21st over. He contributed 13 runs to his side. Botha was caught by Hafeez off Sami.
Ireland were on the verge of victory requiring just 52 runs with six wickets remaining when the match was interrupted due to insufficient light. The rain Gods decided not to have mercy on Pakistan as the game finally resumed after around half-an-hour and Ireland had a revised target of 128 off 47 overs, according to the Duckworth/Lewis method.
Kamran Akmal completed an easy stumping of NJ O'Brien, the highest scorer of the Irish side with his 72 off 107 balls, off Shoaib Malik's bowl. Iftikhar Anjum's double strike marked the end of White (4) and McCallan (0) in the last two deliveries of the 35th over. Still Pakistan looked far from a victory as Ireland required just 16 runs from 12 overs, with three wickets remaining.
Skipper Trent Johnston did the honours for Ireland, sweeping a huge six to mark their remarkable victory over Pakistan.
The Irish, celebrating their National Day, did not make any changes in their playing eleven. However, Pakistan had replaced Mohammad Sami for Rana Naved-ul-Hasan.
West Indies lead the group with two points, Ireland have three and Zimbabwe have one point. Having lost both their matches, Pakistan have no points resulting in an early oust from the tournament.
Ireland: Jeremy Bray, William Porterfield, Eoin Morgan, Kevin O'Brien (wkt), Andre Botha, Niall O'Brien, Kyle McCallan, Trent Johnston (capt), Andrew White, Dave Langford-Smith, Boyd Rankin.
Pakistan: Mohammad Hafeez, Imran Nazir, Younis Khan, Mohammad Yousuf, Inzamam-ul-Haq (capt), Shoaib Malik, Kamran Akmal (wkt), Azhar Mahmood, Mohammad Sami, Rao Iftikhar, Umar Gul.
First Published: Apr 20, 2007 01:27 IST