1st T20I: Ireland Stun West Indies By Four Runs In Series Opener

Updated: 16 January 2020 10:44 IST

Ireland held their nerve in a nail-biting final over to pull off a four-run win over world champions West Indies.

1st T20I: Ireland Stun West Indies By Four Runs In Series Opener
Paul Stirling scored a career-best 95 to help Ireland register a thrilling win over the West Indies. © Twitter

Ireland rode a career-best 95 from opener Paul Stirling before keeping their nerve in a nail-biting final over to pull off a four-run win over world champions West Indies in the first of a three-match Twenty20 series on Wednesday. The burly Stirling steered Ireland to 208-7 in their 20 overs. However, the home side appeared comfortably on course for victory -- bringing up their hundred inside 10 overs with just two wickets down -- until the game was decided in the last over.

Needing 15 to win, all-rounder Josh Little (3-29) got rid of the dangerous Dwayne Bravo, one of two wickets to fall in the last over.

With five needed off the last ball and seven wickets down, Hayden Walsh could only wave his bat into thin air in a desperate attempt to win the game.

It was only Ireland's second victory in T20 cricket over the West Indies who went into the game having swept the ODI series 3-0.

"Everyone is ecstatic, we came so close in that second ODI (lost by one wicket) and it maybe affected us in that third ODI, so to show the bottle and come out against one of the top teams in T20 cricket and get a win was great for the vibe of the team," said Ireland skipper Andrew Balbirnie.

For the home side, opener Evin Lewis top scored with 53 off 28 balls with six fours and three sixes.

It was Lewis's sixth T20 half-century and followed knocks of 95 and 102 in the one-dayers.

West Indian captain Kieron Pollard hit a breezy 31 from 15 balls, threatening to take the game away from Ireland.

But the Irish fielders continued to hold their catches to take the game into the last over.

Earlier, Stirling carted six fours and eight sixes in his 47-ball innings for his seventh T20 half-century. 

He put on 154 for the first wicket with fellow opener Kevin O'Brien (48).

"It was a really good pitch and I think we put a par score on which showed in the end, we felt we were in the game the whole way through," said Stirling.

"It was touch and go, but we're enjoying the tight games -- we came out the right side this time, so it's a nice feeling."

Ireland made 100 off just 6.3 overs and 150 in the 12th over before the West Indies bowlers applied the brakes after the openers fell within two runs of each other.

Bravo, playing an international match for the first time since September 2016, was taken for 18 runs by Stirling in his first over.

But the veteran star recovered to finish with 2-28 off his four overs, clean bowling O'Brien.

Leg-spinner Walsh took 1-25, his sole victim being Stirling caught at deep-midwicket going for the big shot which would have brought him a century.

The second and third games in the series take place on Saturday and Sunday in St Kitts.

Comments
Topics mentioned in this article Ireland Ireland Cricket Team West Indies West Indies Cricket Team Paul Robert Stirling Paul Stirling Cricket
Highlights
  • Ireland beat the West Indies by four runs in the T20I series opener
  • Paul Stirling top-scored for Ireland with a career-best knock of 95
  • The 2nd and 3rd T20I will be played on Saturday and Sunday
Related Articles
Kieron Pollard
Kieron Pollard's Impressive Spell In Vain As 2nd T20I Against Ireland Abandoned
2nd ODI: West Indies Seal Series With Thrilling One-Wicket Win Over Ireland
2nd ODI: West Indies Seal Series With Thrilling One-Wicket Win Over Ireland
1st ODI: Evin Lewis, Alzarri Joseph Shine As West Indies Cruise To Win Over Ireland
1st ODI: Evin Lewis, Alzarri Joseph Shine As West Indies Cruise To Win Over Ireland
TV Umpire To Call Front Foot No-Balls During West Indies vs Ireland ODIs And T20Is
TV Umpire To Call Front Foot No-Balls During West Indies vs Ireland ODIs And T20Is
T20 World Cup Qualifier: Papua New Guinea Book Maiden T20 World Cup Place
T20 World Cup Qualifier: Papua New Guinea Book Maiden T20 World Cup Place
Advertisement