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Garth shines but Ireland girls fall to defeat

 

By Ian Callender

Ireland's match countdown to their Women's World Twenty20 campaign started with defeat to Bangladesh in Guyana.

The game was a repeat of the qualifying final which the Tigresses won in Dublin in July, but competition will be much stiffer when the real action starts next week, so this was a disappointing six-wicket loss with more than five overs to spare.

Kim Garth, the team's leading all-rounder, showed her class with 34 from 35 balls batting at No.7, and then took three wickets in her first over to reduce Bangladesh to 38 for four.

However, Ireland had totalled only 83 for seven and Garth's triple burst was to be their last success of the day.

Gaby Lewis was the only other batter to score more than 10, but worryingly was the only Irish girl to have a strike rate better than a run a ball - 15 from 13, hitting two of the seven boundaries in the innings.

Garth hit the only six, to add to her three fours.

Despite being forced to defend such a low total, Ireland did not change their strategy and used eight bowlers, Eimear Richardson the only one to bowl three while Garth's final figures were 2-0-4-3.

Ireland's remaining warm-up match is against Sri Lanka tomorrow night (midnight GMT) before their opening tournament game against World No.1 Australia on Sunday.

Five of the Ireland squad won Cricket Ireland awards but some tweeted their unhappiness that the ceremony in Dublin last Friday went ahead without them, including Isobel Joyce, the Women's Club Player of the Year.

"Very disappointing scheduling to have the @Irelandcricket awards while the Women's team are away at the @WorldT20 Surprising a date couldn't be found in a winter with only three weeks out of commission," she wrote.

Cricket Ireland's explanation is that the date and venue were confirmed shortly after last year's event and "we clearly hadn't looked far enough down the track to avoid scheduling clashes with events which had our potential involvement rather than those which had our guaranteed participation".

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