Wednesday 17 January 2018

'Sorensen is a tough guy - he will bounce back'

Max Sorensen, Ireland. Photo: Sportsfile
Max Sorensen, Ireland. Photo: Sportsfile

David Townsend

Where was Alex Cusack when you needed him? Ireland skipper William Porterfield would have looked in vain for the recently-retired Mr Reliable on Wednesday night in Dharamsala when he was deciding who would bowl the final over, with Oman needing 14 to win.

Time and again Cusack came up with the goods in much tighter finishes but, sadly for Irish hopes of reaching the next phase of the World T20, on this occasion he was on the other side of India, helping coach the women's team.

Porterfield could have turned to Andy McBrine or Paul Stirling but the heavy dew would have made gripping the ball an issue for his spinners, so he plumped for Max Sorensen.

The rest is history in so much as a wild over from The Hills paceman gave Oman their first win on the world stage.

The two-wicket defeat left Ireland needing to beat Group A favourites Bangladesh today to avoid elimination and a flight home with Scotland, who became the first team to be knocked out after losing to Afghanistan and then Zimbabwe yesterday.


Former Ireland bowler David Langford-Smith, who followed Sorensen's nightmare back home in Dublin, knows better than anyone the agony of being in the spotlight as a victory slips away, having suffered a similar fate in Nairobi nine years ago.

"I got a huge sense of déjà vu. I've been in Maxi's shoes and it's terrible," Langford-Smith said. "I remember having to bowl the 49th over with Kenya's last-wicket pair needing 20 to win from 12 balls. Let's just say the game didn't get as far as the final over.

"You feel you've let everyone around you down and last night I wanted to give Maxi a big hug. It's important he has mates around him and people supporting him.

"It's a bit like being in a car crash. The next time you get in the car, there'll be nerves, but you've just got to get on with it. Maxi is a tough guy and a tough cricketer. He would've been upset last night but he'll bounce back."

Whether Sorensen gets a chance to bounce back against Bangladesh at the same venue today is another matter.

Ireland v Bangladesh,

Live, Sky Sports 2, 1.30

Irish Independent

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