T20 World Cup 2022, Gr 1, IRE v ENG: Ireland beat 2nd-ranked side in T20Is, England at MCG

ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, Super 12, Group 1, Ireland vs England: Andy Balbirnie's 62, Liam Livingstone's 3-17 and Josh Little's 2-16 are top performances as Ireland beat 2nd-ranked side in T20Is, England at MCG in Super 12s game.

ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, Super 12, Group 1, Ireland vs England_ Josh Little took 2-16 against England and helps Ireland beat England in T20 World Cup 2022 | Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©Getty Images)
Josh Little took 2-16 and helps Ireland beat England (Photo: ©Getty Images)

Brief Scores: Ireland 157 (Balbirnie 62, Tucker 34, Livingstone 3/17, Wood 3/34) beat England 105/5 (14.3 ov, Target:111) (Malan 35, Moeen 24*, Little 2/16) by 5 runs (DLS method)


Player of the Match: Andrew Balbirnie (62 runs in 47 balls)


England, who were high on confidence from their five-wicket victory in the opening Super 12 game against Afghanistan, locked horns with Ireland, who were blown away in their opening encounter against Sri Lanka. The fifth Group 1 game of the Super 12 stage of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 was held at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Stadium (MCG) in Melbourne on Wednesday.


The only T20I that both these sides had participated in earlier had ended without a result.


England bowlers lacked intensity against bold Ireland

England were excellent in their opening game against Afghanistan, but against Ireland lacked a little bit of intensity. They were flat in the first 10 overs with ball in hand going too short on a pitch that was helping the bowlers who had the nous to pitch it up. They were also bowling boundary balls regularly in the innings.


On the flipside of the coin, Ireland were brave with the bat as they scored freely using the supreme speed of the England bowlers.


Ireland bag famous victory against England with help from rain

England captain Jos Buttler on winning the toss opted to field first expecting some help from the pitch under grey skies. While Ireland brought in Fionn Hand in place of Simi Singh, England went into the game with the same playing eleven from their last game.


Even though Ireland lost opener Paul Stirling early in the innings, captain Andrew Balbirnie and Lorcan Tucker shared a decent 82-run stand for the second wicket to take Ireland to 103/2 in 12 overs. England spinners bowled in the right channels while the pace of Mark Wood was too hot to handle for the opponents as Ireland fell like a pack of cards to be bundled out for 157 in 19.2 overs.


Defending a below average total, Ireland were excellent in the beginning reducing England to 37/3 in the powerplay before England strolled their way to 63/3 in 10 overs. Wickets were falling from one end as constant threat of rain was making it hard for England and when it finally came down with full intensity, Ireland came victorious by 5 runs according to the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern (DLS) method.


Let’s scan the top three performances from the game between England and Ireland from ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022.

ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, Super 12, Group 1, Ireland vs England_ Andy Balbirnie scored 62 off 48 against England; Ireland beat England _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©ICC_Getty Images)
Andy Balbirnie scored 62 off 48 against England (Photo: ©ICC/Getty Images)

Captain’s knock of 62 from Andrew Balbirnie offers Ireland a respectable total

Even though Ireland qualified to the Super 12 stage in this T20 World Cup 2022, their captain Andrew Balbirnie was short of runs and the pressure slowly was mounting on him. And in a huge game against neighbours England, he stood up with an excellent display of batting.


After losing opener Paul Stirling early on, Balbirnie showed some courage to drive Chris Woakes for a boundary over the cover fielder before stepping away to drive another boundary over cover point against Mark Wood. He was getting full support from Lorcan Tucker from the other end who too was in a wild mood.


Balbirnie slashed Adil Rashid over backward point for a boundary, before smacking Chris Woakes for another boundary in the fine leg region.


Balbirnie celebrated his eighth T20I fifty in 40 deliveries. Two balls later, he slogged Woakes to register another boundary over deep mid-wicket before following it up with a maximum lifted over fine leg region. He now has scored 22 runs in 10 balls against Woakes in T20 without getting dismissed.


Trying to keep the run rate high, he was dismissed on 62 in 47 balls with the help of five boundaries and couple of sixes to take his T20I run tally to 1774 in 83 games.


Read More: T20 World Cup 2022, Gr 1, ENG v AFG: Despite Curran's brilliant 5-10, scratchy Eng crawl to victory

ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, Super 12, Group 1, Ireland vs England_ Liam Livingstone took 3-17 against Ireland; Ireland beat England _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©Getty Images)
Liam Livingstone bagged 3-17 against Ireland (Photo: ©Getty Images)

Part-time spin from Liam Livingstone slowed Ireland down with 3/17

Liam Livingstone has displayed some great all-round performances for England in the shortest format of the game and in a pressure cooker situation, he rescued England yet again.


Ireland were on 127/3 when Livingstone was called into the attack for his second over in the 16th over of the innings. With his third ball of the over, Livingstone sent back opponent captain Andrew Balbirnie (62) who in trying to sweep the bowler, found the deep backward square leg fielder. On the very next ball, Livingstone with a full delivery disturbed the stumps of George Dockrell for a first ball duck.


In his next over, Livingstone bagged the wicket of Mark Adair who bending low swept the bowler straight to the deep mid-wicket fielder as Ireland from being 127/3 in 15 overs, struggled to 150/7 in 18 overs. Livingstone who finished with figures of 3/17 in his three overs now has 15 T20I wickets in 25 games.


Livingstone was well supported by Mark Wood’s expressive pace who blew away Ireland with 3/34 in his four overs and made life hard for the batters at the end of the innings.


Read More: T20 World Cup 2022, Gr 1, IRE v SL: Mendis 68*, Theekshana-Hasaranga spin duo ensure victory for SL

ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, Super 12, Group 1, Ireland vs England_ Josh Little's 2-16 helps Ireland beat England in World Cup Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©ICC_Getty Images)
Josh Little's 2-16 put England on back foot (Photo: ©ICC/Getty Images)

Joshua Little provides early blows with 2/16

Defending a decent total against the batting powerhouse of England, Ireland needed to pick up early wickets and their opening bowler Joshua Little who has been in fabulous form in this tournament made life hard for England openers.


With his second ball of the very first over, Little drew Jos Buttler forward who going hard on the drive got a thin edge as wicketkeeper Lorcan Tucker grabbed an easy catch to send back Buttler on a second ball duck. With that wicket, Josh Little went on top of the charts for most wickets in T20Is amongst seamers, with 33 scalps.


In his very second over, Little caged Alex Hales on 7 who in an attempt to pull a short ball found the short fine leg fielder who took a good running catch as England were reduced to 14/2 in three overs.


Little finished with 2/16 in three overs to take his wicket tally to 57 in 51 T20I games. His early wickets pushed England onto the backfoot and they were not able to score freely in the powerplay.


Read More: T20 World Cup 2022, Gr 1, AUS v SL: Stoinis single-handedly secures win for Australia with 59*(18)


ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022 Group 1 Points Table

ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022 Group 1 Points Table
Group 1 Points Table

Points Table Scenario and What’s to Come

With this loss, England slipped to number three position with a net run rate (NRR) of 0.239, while Ireland opened their account to sit at number four with an NRR of -1.169.


Ireland will now meet Afghanistan, while England have a huge game on their hands as they face arch rivals Australia in their next game. Both the matches will be played on October 28 at the iconic MCG.


Read More: T20 World Cup 2022, Group 2, IND vs PAK: Kohli's unbelievable 82* bamboozles Pakistan; India win


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