Scotland and Ireland’s U19s had both started their U19 World Cup Qualifying campaign in Jersey with an 100% record as the two teams met at Farmers Cricket Ground for their third match of the competition. [scorecard]
James Dickinson won the toss and elected to bat first, as Owais Shah and Calum Garden opened-up for the Scots.
Things couldn’t have started much better for the boys in blue as the pair added a partnership worth 170 runs for the first wicket. Shah, who played some wonderful strokes on his way to 92, was eventually dismissed by Kennedy in the 36th over.
It was then the turn of the Irish bowlers to fight back, as Angus Hinton, Finlay McCreath fell cheaply both to Kennedy before Garden fell for 81.
Rory Johnston hit 26* to get the score up to 231/6 at the end, but the Scots would have been hoping for a few more runs after such a good platform set by the opening pair.
In reply, the bowlers made some early inroads into the Irish top-order with Ihtisham Malik again impressing with the new ball, with Ireland now 106/5 the Scots seemed to be in a relatively good position to close out the match.
However, Scotland v Ireland matches are very rarely dull, and this was to be no exception. Kennedy (43) and Rock (53) then produced a fine partnership to haul their team back into contention as they survived a few scares in the field.
Brown, McCreath Beattie and Johnston all picked up a wicket each, but after removing the danger pair Josh Little, who has experience with Ireland’s senior team took his team to the brink with 37 runs from 23 balls to take his team to the brink of victory.
It still wasn’t all over yet, Little departed but now Ireland only needed 2 runs from the final over. McCreath bowled the last but Neville and Kelly each managed a single to give Ireland victory by 2 wickets with two balls remaining in the most thrilling of finishes.
After playing everybody once the Scots will go again on Friday 28th July against Denmark to get their campaign back on track.