‘It means everything’: Ireland proud to advance in T20 World Cup with irritation at West Indies

Ireland captain Andy Balbirnie praised his team’s mentality after a nine-wicket win over West Indies secured their spot in the Super 12 stage of the T20 World Cup.

After recovering from a 31-round loss to Zimbabwe by beating Scotland, Balbirnie’s side used that momentum to put in another impressive performance.

Despite Brandon King hitting an unbeaten 62, Ireland’s spinners helped limit the batting attack, with Gareth Delany taking three to 16 and Sami Singh one to 11 from his two overs, while West Indies went 146 to five.

Opening players Paul Stirling and Balbirnie then made 73 for the first wicket before the skipper was caught on point ahead of Akeal Hosein for 37.

Lorcan Tucker (45 not out) continued to offer support for Stirling, who finished with a nice unbeaten 66 from 48 balls, including half a dozen limits and two sixes.

Ireland advanced to the next stage of the tournament for the second time, most recently in 2009.

“It means everything to us. We were so disappointed to miss that stage last year so we had to do a lot of thinking and make a lot of changes at home,” Balbirnie said after Ireland’s win, as reported by BBC Sport.

“We set out some things that we wanted to achieve as a team and how we wanted to play.

“And that’s where we lost our first game, but to come back and beat the two-time champions in a must-win game, I couldn’t be prouder.

“It was an emotional conclusion, we are totally thrilled.”

Balbirnie added: A lot can happen in T20 cricket if it’s your day. We want to compete with the best in the world and who knows where that might lead us?”

As Ireland celebrate another milestone, two-time champions West Indies are left with an ignominious first-round loss.

West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran, who was out for 13, said: “It’s really tough.

“I want to congratulate Ireland, they batted and bowled fantastically today.

“We didn’t hit well enough throughout the tournament. This is a learning experience for us, we’re really disappointed and we know our fans at home will be disappointed.

“It definitely hurts. I’m disappointed in myself and how it went but we will live to fight another day.”

https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/cricket/ireland-stirling-west-indies-zimbabwe-scotland-b2207574.html ‘It means everything’: Ireland proud to advance in T20 World Cup with irritation at West Indies

Fry Electronics Team

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