Blarney army open with a win

Convincing win in Jo’burg for Ireland today over their nearest rivals as they open their campaign to reach the 2011 Cricket World Cup. Having been set a modest 232 by Scotland, Ireland cruised to victory by 7 wickets with more than 12 overs to spare. Man of the match was skipper and Gloucestershire’s Will Porterfield with 101 off only 89 balls. No resting on laurels however as Ireland’s next game against Oman (really?) in Krugerdorp is tomorrow morning.

Match Summary: Scotland 232-7 (50 ov) McCallum 121*; Rankin 2-27 Ireland 233-3 (37.4 ov) Porterfield 101, E Morgan 60

  • Chris Donnelly

    Good result Dave and glad to see you blogging here. Out of interest, how many games will Ireland have to play to ensure qualification? As you’ve suggested that Scotland were the nearest rivals, are you suggesting that the rest of the teams they’ll face in qualification should not pose as much a problem as the Scots?

  • Dave Hartin

    Thanks Chris, nice to be back after the winter break.

    As with all things cricket, it’s a bit unnecessarily complicated. 12 teams in 2 groups of six all play each other in round robin format. The top four from each group qualify for the “Super Eights” where they play the teams from the other group carrying the points through against the teams they have already played and qualified with in their original group but discarding the points accrued against the teams eliminated at the first stage (phew!).

    At this stage the top four from eight qualify for the CWC 2011 but there are play-offs for the winners, 3rd place etc. The top six gain official ODI status for 4 years meaning they get more money from the ICC and can play the big Test playing sides.

    In short, Ireland will need to play at least 9 games to qualify, hopefully the tenth will be the final! Ireland have the tougher original group with Scotland, Namibia and Canada their main rivals. Namibia are a capable side but lost to Ireland twice in the ICC Intercontinental Cup at the tail end of last year (see Slugger passim).

    In the other group the big boys are The Netherlands and Kenya.
    Kenya (who are officially ODI ranked but maybe not for much longer) lost to the Dutch today and currently prop up the group with Bermuda the only other nation of any note in group B.

    My Prediction : super eight (in order): Ireland, Namibia, Scotland, The Netherlands, Kenya, Canada, Denmark + one other. Ireland v Namibia final, could be anyone’s.

  • Chris Donnelly

    Thanks Dave. Will keep an eye on the progress of the ‘Blarney’ boys with interest.

    One question- you mention how ODI status brings with it extra money from the ICC.

    I’m just wondering what level of support is given (financially) to cricket from the Irish government and Stormont administration?

  • Dave Hartin

    Will need to look into that, Chris. I’ll get back to you on that. Maybe other Sluggerites…

  • Dewi

    why ain’t Wales in it ?

  • Dave Hartin

    Do you really want to get into that Dewi?

    I am off to Sofia Gardens for day 4 of the 1st test if you’re around.

  • Dewi

    Sophia – unless Bulgaria play the daft game as well !!!

  • fin

    Dewi, Wales are busy in the West Indies at the moment with their English teammates.

    Its shocking that none of these games make it to TV or even radio, thank god for Cricinfo. Most of the games yesterday went down to the wire, the only other easy win was Canada over Oman, Irelands oppents today.

    Dave, you don’t think Afganistan will feature, they’ve been the darlings of the competition so far, possibly more so for propaganda reasons tho.

    Not sure I’d like to meet Nambia in the final again, the ICC game was nerve jangling to say the least.

  • Dave Hartin

    Chris

    Have just made some time to look into your query re funding. Will have to fire off a few E-mails etc but it looks like the Irish Sports Council included cricket in it’s high performance funding for the first time this month. I’m not going to get too excited about 50,000 euro, considering the Clay Pigeon Shooters got 60,000.