T20 World Cup 2021 | Pretty comfortable win, says Andrew Balbirnie as Ireland thrash Netherlands

T20 World Cup 2021 | Pretty comfortable win, says Andrew Balbirnie as Ireland thrash Netherlands

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Ireland defeated Netherlands by 27 runs in the Group A Round 1 match on Monday


| Courtesy - ICC

After Ireland defeated Netherlands by 7 wickets and 27 balls remaining at Abu Dhabi's Sheikh Zayed Stadium on Monday, winning captain Andrew Balbirnie hailed his bowlers, especially Curtis Campher, who picked four consecutive wickets in the match. Ireland will next face Sri Lanka on Wednesday.

After electing to bat first, Netherlands batting crumbled in front of a disciplined Ireland bowling attack which picked a wicket in the form of opener Ben Cooper on the very third ball of the first over. Bas de Leede was the second one to depart before Man of the Match Curtis Campher came down hard in the 10th over, picking four wickets in four balls. 

Campher first dismissed Ackermann after the batsman's attempted pull shot went into the gloves of wicketkeeper Neil Rock. Next up, Doeschare was trapped in front of the stump while trying to play across the line. On the hat-trick delivery, the South Africa-born cricketer trapped Edwards in a similar fashion. By this time fans and commentators were going wild at Abu Dhabi's Sheikh Zayed Stadium. Campher added more flavour to the celebration by castling Merwe, to make it 4 dismissals in 4 deliveries. Notably, the first and third wickets came only after Ireland opted for DRS reviews. 

Captain Pieter Seelar showed some resistance with his 29-ball 21 but Netherland could never recover from the strikes from Campher.

Chasing a 107-run target Paul Stirling (30) stitched a 59-run partnership with Gareth Delany (44 off 29) despite the quick dismissals of experienced Kevin O Brien (9) and captain Andrew Balbirnie (8). Campher (7*) contributed made his day merrier by hitting the winning run for his team. 

Reflecting on the win, Balbirnie praised his bowlers for the comfortable win. He said his team was peaking at the right time. 

"Feels really good. Losing the toss and chasing that total was good, satisfied with that. We just tried to attack the stumps, we were disciplined. It was a brilliant performance by the bowlers, especially by Curtis Campher. We got a couple of reviews, so that's great in T20 cricket. Gareth played the innings we wanted him to. It was a pretty comfortable chase in the end and we are peaking at the right time," Curtis Campher said during the post-match presentation ceremony. 

Further, summing up his all-round stellar performance, Curtis Campher, conceded that he kept faith in him despite not executing first over as per his plan. The 22-year-old South Africa-born player is now only the third bowler after Lasith Malinga and Rashid Khan to take four wickets in four balls in T20I cricket. 

"[First wicket review?] "I knew there was glove, I heard a sound. [Third wicket review?] I thought it was dead, definitely hitting leg stump. I didn't feel the best, coming back from injury, just kept trying to bang the length. First over didn't go as planned but Bal kept faith with me. Any day I don't bat is a good day but to knock off 10 runs when I walk in is nice," he said. 

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