Friday 18 January 2019

Windies defeat opens the door


Chris Gayle
Chris Gayle

Gerard Hughes

The disappointment in the Ireland camp at letting slip a strong position and losing to the West Indies on Saturday was compounded yesterday when Afghanistan burst the bubble of Chris Gayle's team to throw the World Cup qualifiers wide open.

Scotland eased to a 73-run victory over the United Arab Emirates in Bulawayo to top the Super Sixes table with five points from three games, while the surprise came at the Harare Sports Club where Afghanistan recorded their first win, beating the West Indies by three wickets.

Ireland are involved in the next two games in the Super Sixes, meeting hosts Zimbabwe today at Harare Sports and Scotland at the same venue on Sunday.

Two wins would send the Boys in Green top of the table with three wins from four, albeit having played a game more.

Ireland coach Graham Ford is happy that his side will play their remaining games at Zimbabwe's premier venue where his team have contested two of their Group A matches, whereas Scotland's first four games have all been in Bulawayo.

"The boys enjoy playing at the Sports Club, it provides a good contest between bat and ball," he said.

"The equation to get into the top two and qualify is what it is, all we can worry about it winning our next game.

"Zimbabwe are tough to beat on their home turf, they've played good cricket of late and the match will give us a good idea of where we are at."

Irish Independent

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