Tector and Mulder stake Ireland claims to put Wolves in control
It was another good day at the office for the Ireland Wolves, who left themselves needing to take eight wickets for a victory against Scotland A at Claremont Road.
As expected, Wolves skipper Andrew Balbirnie did not enforce the follow on, despite boasting a first-innings lead of 166, and it was Jack Tector who cashed in second time around with a well constructed 107. The declaration followed his dismissal and left Scotland a victory target of 371.
More realistically, it gave the Wolves 119 overs to bowl out the Scots for a second time, and Peter Chase took two wickets in the 15 overs before the close to put the Irish firmly in control.
Although batsmen invariably steal the headlines, Jacob Mulder put his hand up for a recall to the senior side for next month's Intercontinental Cup clash against the Netherlands with his first five-wicket haul in an Irish shirt.
Having reduced the Scots to 53 for five with a wicket on the last ball of the first day, he picked up another four yesterday morning without the aid of a fielder. He did get help from the umpire for his first wicket of the day, a leg before decision which looked very high from the boundary edge, but the Scots could have no complaints about the rest. Indeed, they could only admire his flight and spin, which bamboozled numbers eight, nine and 10.
Chase got the vital wicket of Mark Watt, who has so far produced a virtual one-man show for the Scots. His slow left arm took four wickets in the Wolves' first innings and all three in the second, and he also top scored with 68 at No.7 in the order.
When the home side started their second innings 40 minutes after lunch, Ed Joyce was back in the pavilion inside 12 overs, caught at mid-on two balls after he was dropped at mid-off. But he seemed happy enough to allow Balbirnie to make up for his first-innings failure and the skipper duly scored 77 off 88 balls.
Tector proved the perfect foil, taking 91 balls over his first 50 with just four boundaries, but showed he can accelerate when required - his second 50 coming off 39 balls with six fours and the only two sixes of the innings.
He unselfishly gave his wicket away knowing the declaration was imminent, but he too has put his name in the frame for what would be a senior debut.