Porterfield and Balbirnie hit centuries to boost Ireland
Centuries by William Porterfield and Andy Balbirnie gave Ireland victory over the United Arab Emirates in Dubai - their fourth successive win in One Day Internationls.
It would be wrong to get too excited about a couple of victories over modest opposition following a 2-1 comeback series success against Afghanistan, but there are promising signs that the team is moving in the right direction again ahead of the World Cup qualifiers in Zimbabwe in March.
Coach Graham Ford was able to rest veteran Ed Joyce, who scored a century in the first game, and still see his new charges ease home by 67 runs after posting 301-5, due mainly to Balbirnie's first ODI century and skipper Porterfield's highest white-ball score of 139.
The bowling attack is also looking more tuned in under the guidance of Rob Cassell, who is Ford's assistant. Without the absent Tim Murtagh and rested Boyd Rankin, they dismissed the UAE for 234. Kevin O'Brien headlined with 4-41 and Barry McCarthy took his customary two wickets.
Meanwhile, Ireland's U-19s lost their opening World Cup match to Sri Lanka by seven wickets in New Zealand and now face a tough task to qualify from a four-team group that also features Afghanistan, who beat Pakistan on Saturday.
North County youngster Jamie Grassi top-scored with 75 from 117 balls with seven fours and a six.
Elsewhere, Jason Roy hit the highest one-day international score by an England player with a sublime 180 to help the tourists beat Australia by five wickets in the first ODI at the MCG.