Gallant Ireland tied with Pakistan – 1st ODI

Ireland 5-275 (Paul Stirling 103, Kevin O’Brien 84*, Mohammad Hafeez 2-34) drew with Pakistan 5-266 (Mohammad Hafeez 122, Asad Shafiq 84, Kevin O’Brien 2-43) D/L method.

Paul Stirling plundered a century and Kevin O’Brien nearly won the game for Ireland with his all round performance vs. Pakistan as the match was tied.

The game was reduced to 47 overs per side due to weather and the Green Shirts scored 266 runs for the loss of five wickets. Ireland was given a task of 276 runs to win the match as per Duckworth /Lewis method and they powered 275 with five wickets intact.

Kevin O’Brien (Ireland) was declared ‘Player of the match’ for his stunning display in both bowling and batting.

The first One Day International of the two match series was played on Thursday, May 23, 2013, at Clontarf Cricket Club Ground, Dublin.

Misbah-ul-Haq, the captain of Pakistan, won the toss and felt no hesitation in batting first. Imran Farhat along with Nasir Jamshed got off slowly and scored just 11 runs in the initial six overs. Nasir Jamshed hit the first boundary which was a six in the next over but walked off the field in the 10th over after being retired hurt at 15. He was replaced by Mohammad Hafeez and Imran Farhat was gone for 9 as Asad Shafiq walked in next. Mohammad Hafeez hit 4 fours in the coming overs and Asad Shafiq was crawling at his end. The hundred runs mark was crossed in the 26th over and Mohammad Hafeez scored his fifty in the 31st over.

Asad Shafiq followed his partner three overs later by attaining his 8th ODI half century. Mohammad Hafeez changed his gears and was sending the ball out of the fence regularly and Asad Shafiq was doing well at his end. The second wicket enhanced the score to 221 in 42.3 overs as Asad Shafiq was caught by Trent Johnston at long on on the bowling of Alex Cusack for 84 off 89 balls with 9 fours. Mohammad Hafeez thrashed his fifth ODI century in the 44th over as another two wickets fell from the other side. Nasir Jamshed and Misbah-ul-Haq went out cheaply for 20 and 0 runs respectively as Kamran Akmal lost his wicket for 13. Mohammad Hafeeez secured his end for 122 off just 113 with 2 sixes and 12 fours as the Green Shirts reached 266 with half of their side back in the pavilion after 47 overs.

Kevin O'Brien - A charged all round performance
Kevin O’Brien – A charged all round performance

Kevin O’Brien and Alex Cusack were the only two successful bowlers among six with two wickets each.

Ireland required 276 runs to grasp the match and they started the chase well with their skipper, William Porterfield, and Paul Stirling.  The duo scored 54 in the first 10 overs with 7 fours from Stirling and 2 from Porterfield. The latter lost his wicket in the 13th over at 62 after scoring 19 runs as Ed Joyce joined in next with Stirling who got his fifty in the 17th over. Joyce hit the first six of their innings in the 22nd over as Stirling kept on enhancing from the other end with his forceful batting. The second wicket fell at 158 when Ed Joyce was clean bowled by Mohammad Hafeez for 32.

Kevin O’Brien walked in next as Paul Stirling blasted his fifth ODI ton in the 34th over and became the next victim after scoring 103 off 107 with 1 six and 12 fours. The hosts needed 99 runs to clinch the encounter from the last 66 deliveries as O’Brien took over. He hit 1 six and 6 fours in the following overs and rushed to his 8th ODI half century in the 41st over. Kevin O’Brien kept on the attack as a couple of wicket fell from the other end. The target shrunk to 15 from the last 6 deliveries and the over was bowled by the master off spinner, Saeed Ajmal. O’ Brien scored 9 runs from the first five balls as the home side was searching five runs from the last ball which was dispatched for a four. The score was levelled at 5-275 and Kevin O’Brien remained unbeaten with a lightening knock of 84 off 47 mere balls comprising 2 lofty sixes and 11 well timed fours.

Junaid Khan and Mohammad Hafeez were the top wicket takers with two each whereas Mohammad Irfan got one.

The thrilling first One Day International ended as a tied and the second game will be played on May 26, 2013, at the same venue.


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