Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Netherlands defied the odds to qualify for the Super-10 stage of the World Twenty20
The Netherlands achieved the impossible today as they chased down a target of 190 inside of 14 overs to not only beat Ireland by six wickets, but to also qualify for the Super-10 stage of the World Twenty20.
Netherlands opening batsman Stephan Myburgh and all-rounder Tom Cooper were the standout performers as Myburgh blazed his way to a half-century, while Cooper absolutely demolished Ireland’s bowling attack during his trailblazing knock of 45.
Netherlands captain Peter Borren would have been pleased with his decision to bowl first as he took the catch to dismiss Ireland opener Paul Stirling off the bowling of Timm van der Gugten for seven runs.
Ireland skipper William Porterfield smashed a quickfire 47, which came off 32 balls and included five boundaries and two sixes, before he was clean bowled by Ahsan Jamil.
Ed Joyce scored 28 runs before he was run out by Wesley Barresi.
Andrew Poynter and Kevin O’Brien kept the runs flowing with an outstanding 101-run partnership, during which Poynter brought up his half-century, before he was caught by Logan van Beek at deep midwicket off the bowling of Jamil.
Poynter’s fantastic knock of 57 came off 38 balls and included four boundaries and four sixes.
O’Brien remained unbeaten on 42 off 16 deliveries, which included two boundaries and four maximums, as Ireland finished on 189/4 at the end of their 20 overs.
Jamil picked up two wickets, while van der Gugten chipped in with one.
Chasing 190 to win, the Netherlands got off to a fabulous start as their opening pair of Myburgh and Borren amassed a 91-run partnership, during which Myburgh registered his half-century, before Borren was brilliantly caught by George Dockrell off the bowling of O’Brien for 31.
Myburgh ended up making 63 off 23 balls, which included four boundaries and an incredible seven sixes, before he was caught by Joyce at deep midwicket off the bowling of Dockrell.
Van Beek only made one run before he was the victim of a stunning catch by Porterfield off the bowling of O’Brien.
Cooper and Barresi steadied the innings with a rapid 61-run partnership before Cooper was caught by O’Brien at deep backward square leg off the bowling of Tim Murtagh.
Cooper’s cameo of 45 came off just 15 balls and included one boundary and six maximums.
From that point on it was Barresi who took over and smashed 40 off 22 deliveries, which included three boundaries and three sixes, to help the Netherlands beat Ireland by six wickets and advance to the next round of the World Twenty20.
O’Brien was the most successful bowler with two wickets, while Murtagh and Dockrell picked up one wicket each.
Porterfield was still in shock at what he had just witnessed, and said: “Scoring 190, we were pretty confident. But it was pretty clean striking. Nothing we could do. We thought if they went for it, it would create chances for us, but everything went over. We didn’t bowl the right lengths and made mistakes in the field. But there is nothing you could do.”
Borren was ecstatic to have qualified for the Super-10 stage of the World Twenty20, and said: “We didn’t have much to lose and we were not happy with our bowling. The Irish boys did pretty well to score 190. We had plenty of guys who could hit well and it all came off today. The boys are really happy. Sad for Ireland, who played very well for 2.5 games.
“I got out there and had a little bit of go, but it was Myburgh who set the scene. I am not really sure if I have seen cleaner hitting. [In] 2009 we beat England and that was a pretty special night. But I told the boys 2009 was five years ago and it was time to create a new memory. I will go back and sing the team song with the rest [of them].”
Myburgh was named Man of the Match, and said: “It looked calm, but it wasn’t very calm. Today, the strategy was to keep my head still and look to hit everything out. We had to play well in the Powerplay over. The skipper played very well. The pitch was really good too.”