Ireland Upsets England Once Again in World Cups Winning the Rain-hit T20 World Cup Clash at MCG
Ireland cricket team beat the T20 World Cup favourites England by 5 runs by Duck-worth Lewis method on Wednesday’s game on the MCG venue in ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia.
This is the second time Ireland has stunned the England cricket team in a World Cup match. Kevin O’Brien inspired famous Ireland’s chase of 327 runs target in 2011’s 50 overs World Cup in Banglore Stadium in India.
England’s loss of these 2 points could result in their early exit from the T20 World Cup. Their next game vs Australia has now become a virtual knock-out game for them.
England started their campaign with a win over Afghanistan. However, their batting woes were on evident in that match as well.
Their bowling was brilliant in the game vs Afghanistan and for the second part of the Ireland’s innings. Their batting has failed to perform as per expectations of cricketing world.
After restricting Afghanistan to a mere total of 112 runs, England batting was unable to score at a brisk rate and they kept losing wickets at regular interval before getting to the target in the 19th over with the lose of 5 wickets.
They had a great chance to get to the target in under 15 overs as to improve their run-rate massively going into the bigger encounters ahead but failed to do so.
Net run-rate is expected to play a major role once again as tournament progresses with more matches being affected by rain and more upsets might happen as well.
Rain Playing Soil-sport for Big Teams
England are not the first big team to get affected by the rain-hit matches. South Africa lost a potential point against Zimbabwe as well in the other group of the Super 12 round. New Zealand’s match vs Afghanistan also got washed out.
Just like Australia vs England, the match between South Africa and Pakistan is also shaping up as a virtual knock-out.
Just a reminder Pakistan lost their opening game against India in a last ball thriller. They need to win their remaining games and also make sure South Africa do not get ahead on the points table.
It is worth remembering that only two teams from each group will qualify for the semi-finals of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup happening in Australia.
Struggles and a Great Come-Back from England’s Bowling Attack
Ireland had a brilliant start to their innings against England’s competent bowling attack. They were 103-1 in 12th over of the match before they crumbled to 157 – all out with balls to spare.
Ireland’s captain A Balbirnie played a brilliant knock of 62 of 47 balls. LJ Tucker played his part in the 82 runs partnership for the second-wicket with A Balbirnie with a calculated inning of 32 of 27 balls.
C Campher played a quick little knock of 18 off 11 balls as England’s bowling attack of Wood, Curran and Livingstone turned up for the second half of the innings picking up 8 wickets between them.
Particularly, Livingstone had a fine bowling performance of 17/3 in 3 overs. Adil Rashid’s went wicket-less and his form is a big concern for captain Jos Buttler.
Woakes’ Rare Failure and Ireland Capitalize
England’s bowling in the first 12 overs of Ireland inning was poor on a pitch that was showing immense help for fast bowlers. Chris Woakes had a poor outing with the figure of 41 runs conceded in just 3 overs on a pitch that was seaming and swinging for the whole game.
Hales and Buttler’s Cheap Outing in Second World Cup Match in a Row
In reply, England were 29-3 at one stage. For the second time in this T20 World Cup, the Hales and Buttler opening pair failed to provide a good start to the England’s inning.
Buttler went for a second ball duck and Hales for 7 runs off 5 balls leaving England to build the inning from 14-2 in the 3rd of the powerplay.
Dawid Malan struggled to up the scoring rate as well Harry Brook coming after Fionn Hand got Ben Stokes bowled with a peach of delivery.
Ben Stokes’s Poor Form Continues
Ben Stokes scored 6 of 8 balls as his poor form in recent international T20 matches continued. His last 5 innings for England are;
- 9 (9) vs Australia
- 7 (11) vs Australia
- 17 (10) vs Australia
- 2 (4) VS Afghanistan
- 6 (8) vs Ireland.
Should Moeen Ali and Livingstone Bat Higher Up For England?
Moeen Ali came on to bat at number 6 and was looking at his best before rain stopped play for the final time. He was batting 24 runs with a strike rate of 200.
Once again it was a strange decision from England’s management to send the batter with the highest ability to clear the big boundaries in Austrlia and particularly in Melbourne Cricket Ground. Liam Livingstone came too late, at number 7, and only played two balls before rain came pouring down giving Ireland a golden chance at 2 points.
Livingstone and Moeen Ali are two great hitters of the ball and are the most lethal T20 batters beside Jos Buttler in the shortest format of the game. They have been in great form in the current calendar year as well.
It is behind logic and sense as to keep them limited to few balls at 6 and 7. Livingstone is a capable batter at number 4 and at max should be slotted in top-5 in England’s batting order.
While Moeen Ali is played at every batting order and produced some fine batting performances at top order and middle order for both England and Chennai Super Kings in Indian Premier League. He is probably the best batter in the England middle order who counter attack the spin bowling in the middle overs with ease. England are missing a big bonus there with playing Moeen Ali way down the order.
England Could Have Gone With The Extra Seamer Vs Ireland!
This pitch was absolutely tailor made for a swing bowler like David Willey. England have covered their bowling in middle and death with fiery bowling from Wood and Curran’s killer yorkers at the back end.
However, it was evident that needed someone to swing the bowl upfront as Woakes continued to struggle with pace.
For a bowling attack like Ireland their batting already looked solid. They could have dropped Brook for David Willey and gone with the extra seemer just looking the overcast conditions and the bounce of the pitch. They missed a trick here.
However, even they bowled poorly in the first half of Ireland inning, they managed to restrict them under 160 witch was easily gettable. And they could have chased it down had they played the full 20 overs.
They are not sure about batting form and it is one of the reason why they are playing an extra batter in the line-up. However, even with the extra batter they failed to play the fearless brand of cricket they usually play.
DLS Loss is Management’s Fault!
There was no intention from the batter, particularly Brook and Malan to get on par with the DLS score. The sky was covered with cloud and it was evident that rain was going to spoil the party in some point in the game.
The management looked unbothered about the weather conditions even after the match was delayed at the start.
The batsmen also looked more concerned about getting to the score in full 20 overs than scoring at a rate to avoid being under par with DLS score.
It is a management failure to not know the basics of DLS scoring rates. England were scoring at under 6 runs per over for the most part of their innings before Moeen Ali came on and tried to up the scoring rate.
Dawid Malan scored 35 off 37 with a strike rate of just 94.59 which is unacceptable in this format. HC Brook scored 18 runs at a strike rate of just 85.71 which ultimately resulted in England being below par on the DLS rate.
This could have absolutely been avoided if England players and management were smart about their chase. When you play 5 overs in the second innings, there is always going to be result if the play is interrupted due to rain. It is basics in cricket rule.
This mishap could result in a potential early Super 12 exit for the T20 World Cup favorites and the blame is all on the management of England’s cricket.