World Cup: Ireland Overcome Zimbabawe to Stay in Hunt for Quarters
Ireland beat Zimbabwe by five runs in a thrilling last-over finish to stay alive in the hunt for the knockout stage.
Ireland held on to their nerves to beat Zimbabwe by five runs and stay in the hunt for quarterfinal on Saturday (All photos Getty Images)
Ed Joyce scored a splendid knock of 112 after Zimbabwe put Ireland in to bat first.
Joyce was well-supported by Andy Balbirnie who finished agonisingly short of his maiden ODI century. The 24-year-old finished on 97 off 79 balls, hitting seven fours and four sixes.
Tendai Chatara and Sean Williams bagged three wickets each but Ireland finished well to post a mammoth total of 331/8.
Zimbabwe suffered a poor start to their big chase as they were reduced to 41/3 in the 11th over.
Brendan Taylor (121 off 91 balls) and Sean Williams (96 off 83 balls) steered Zimbabwe out of early trouble and laid the platform for an exciting run-chase.
Taylor scored his 5th ODI ton to keep Ireland on their toes.
Taylor eventually fell for 121 but Williams carried on and kept his team in the hunt.
It took a controversial decision to knock Zimbabwe totally out of the game when a Williams was adjudged out to a catch in the outfield by John Mooney. Replays were inconclusive as to whether his leg touched the boundary line.
Tawanda Mupariwa carted 18 runs off the penultimate over and took the game to the final one but Zimbabwe did not have enough wickets in hand. Ireland won the game by five runs.