Ireland posts stunning five-run T20 win over England at MCG

Ireland celebrates the wicket of Jos Buttler in its upset five-run WT20 win over England.

Ireland celebrates the wicket of Jos Buttler in its upset five-run WT20 win over England. Photo: AAP

Ireland has marked its MCG cricket debut with a stunning T20 World Cup upset of England.

When rain stopped play in the 15th over, England was 5-105 in reply to Ireland’s 157.

The match was called off a few minutes later, with the English five runs short of the par score.

That sets up a massive group match on Friday night between Australia and England at the same venue.

The two top-ranked teams have 1-1 records and the loser is out of title contention.

Ireland was the second-lowest ranked team in the Super 12 stage of the tournament.

England was in trouble from the start, with Jos Buttler dismissed with the second ball of the innings.

When Ben Stokes fell cheaply it was 3-29, before Dawid Malan and Harry Brook combined to briefly steady the innings.

The English were 3-63 at halfway, but after two dropped catches in the 11th over, Brook was dismissed for 18.

Malan top scored with 35 from 37 balls and Moeen Ali was unbeaten on 24 from 12 deliveries, while opening bowler Josh Little snared 2-16.

England put the brakes on an impressive start from Ireland, which was dismissed in 19.2 overs.

The Irish were flying at 1-92 from 10 overs after England won the toss.

But Ireland lost two wickets in three balls soon after and that proved crucial as England wrested back control.

Captain Andrew Balbirnie top scored with 62 from 47 balls, including five fours and two sixes.

His second-wicket stand of 82 with Lorcan Tucker took Ireland to 103 in the 12th over and England was under pressure.

But Tucker was run out for 34 when Adil Rashid deflected Balbirnie’s straight hit off his bowling onto the stumps at the non-striker’s end.

Tucker was backing up too far and it proved a costly stroke of bad luck for the Irish.

Two balls later, Harry Tector was caught behind for a duck and the momentum that Ireland had built – including 18 off the 10th over from Chris Woakes – rapidly disintegrated.

Mark Wood took 3-34 and Liam Livingstone snared 3-17.

Livingstone had Balbirnie caught in the deep in the 16th over and was on a hat-trick when he bowled George Dockrell with his next delivery.

Rain delayed the start of the match with the players also forced from the field early in Ireland’s innings because of a shower.


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