Ireland have once again underlined their status as the best non-Test playing cricketing nation in the world after a comprehensive victory over Canada in Centurion. William Porterfield is developing a reputation as a lucky skipper at the toss and when he called correctly, it was no surprise that the Canadians were asked to bat first as the Irish side have appeared much more comfortable chasing than setting a total. Despite Scotland’s chagrin at the weakened Irish side selected for the last Super-Eight game against Kenya, Phil Simmons decision to rest ex-captain and World Cup hero (and funky chicken expert) Trent Johnston (pictured, with Boyd Rankin after another wicket) was proved to be genius as he decimated the Canadian batting and ended up with five wickets. Rankin also bagged a brace as Canada were bowled out for 185 committing the cardinal sin of not completing their overs. It was never likely to be enough. An unbeaten century from Porterfield put the gloss on things as Ireland romped home by nine wickets.
Match Summary Canada 185 (48 ov) Bhatti 46; Johnston 5-14 Ireland 188-1 (42.3 ov) Porterfield 104* Ireland win by 9 wickets
Next up for the Irish is the Friends Provident Trophy campaign starting against Worcestershire in Belfast next Sunday. It’ll be a very different side stripped of the likes of Porterfield, Rankin and Niall O’Brien but a good chance to blood some stars of the future. Stormont’s a lovely setting to watch some cricket so if the weather’s nice why not go down with your Sunday paper, have a pint and support the lads? Tickets are a tenner for adults and £3 for kids – it’s always a good day out.