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Ireland thump UAE by 226 runs in Harare

Paul Stirling scored a terrific 126 against UAE
Paul Stirling scored a terrific 126 against UAE

Ireland 313-6 (Stirling 126) beat
United Arab Emirates 91 (Rankin 4-15) by 226 runs DLS
18th game, ICC World Cup Qualifiers, Harare

Paul Stirling and William Porterfield contributed 126 and 92 respectively as Ireland overpowered United Arab Emirates by 226 runs DLS in the rain-hit 44-over game of the ICC World Cup Qualifiers in Harare.

Despite the massive win, Ireland will head into the Super Six as the second-placed side in Group B behind Windies, while UAE too join them in the next round with two wins as compared to Netherlands, who have just one.

UAE won the toss and decided to bowl first. However, soon after the game started, rain interrupted play and the game was reduced to a 44-over encounter.

Stirling (126) and Porterfield (92) looked positive from the outset toying around the UAE bowlers as they shared a 200-run stand for the opening wicket inside 35 overs to lay a terrific platform for the middle order to unleash themselves.

Porterfield fell eight runs short of a deserving ton but Stirling completed his taking 106 deliveries for it. Between them, they smashed 25 boundaries to go with seven sixes as UAE were left clueless.

On reaching his century, Stirling upped the ante further with two more sixes and three boundaries before he was dismissed in the 38th over but Kevin O'Brien (50 not out), who was promoted to number three provided the late flourish with his 26-ball knock that lifted Ireland's total to 313 for six in the allotted 44 overs.

UAE's target was revised to 318 from 44 overs as per the DLS method but that was taken out of the equation very early with Boyd Rankin (4-15) and Barry McCarthy (2-26) handing early blows before Simi Singh (3-15) came later in the attack to clean up the lower order and bowl UAE out for 91 runs in 29.3 overs

Stirling was awarded the player of the match.

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