Wednesday 13 December 2017

Ireland's ODI tour of South Africa ends with heavy defeat to Australia

Paul Stirling hit a quickfire 30 in Ireland's heavy defeat to Australia
Paul Stirling hit a quickfire 30 in Ireland's heavy defeat to Australia

Ireland's brief one-day international tour of South Africa ended with a second heavy defeat as they went down to Australia by nine wickets in Benoni.

Ireland were bundled out for 198 and, while that was their highest-ever score against the world champions, it was nowhere near enough as Australia wiped off the target with almost 20 overs to spare.

Usman Khawaja was named man of the match for his unbeaten 82, while young leg-spinner Adam Zampa further enhanced his growing reputation with three for 37.

Will Porterfield's side suffered a 206-run defeat to hosts South Africa in their only other game of the tour on Sunday and made one change from that team with seamer Barry McCarthy replacing Craig Young.

Ireland began well after opting to bat, confidently progressing to 121 for two, but lost their way once John Anderson was trapped lbw by Scott Boland for a career-best 39.

Zampa was particularly impressive, the 24-year-old confounding the Irish with his full repertoire, as he first fooled skipper Porterfield with a flipper while Kevin O'Brien and George Dockrell both missed wrong'uns.

It was an ominous warning to South Africa ahead of the upcoming five-match series, which was reinforced when David Warner blasted 48 from 30 balls before Khawaja and Steve Smith cruised to victory in an unbroken 126-run stand.

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