Ireland Wolves not disgraced despite suffering heavy loss
Jack Tector was the one shining light in the Ireland Wolves side as a Bangladesh XI enjoyed a gentle work-out in the Stormont sunshine yesterday, ahead of the Tri-series with Ireland and New Zealand starting tomorrow.
The huge victory margin of 199 runs was a fair reflection of the difference in the two sides which, remember, was the seventh best team in the world, virtually at full strength, playing an Ireland second team.
Any judgement on this Wolves performance should be withheld until after the senior team's game against the same opposition in Malahide tomorrow.
What is clear, though, is that no-one is knocking down the door demanding promotion to the senior side with Tector the only batsman who stayed in any length of time, while all the bowlers conceded at least six runs an over as the Tigers amassed 394 for seven - the highest score ever against an Ireland 'A' side.
It is surely the toughest team they have faced - until today when they meet the New Zealanders, the No.4 ranked ODI side, in a 25-overs game at Rathmines, now starting at 3.30pm.
Craig Young, the one player in the Tri-series squad, did himself no favours in his attempt to force his way back into the side, conceding 82 runs in his 10 overs, albeit 20 coming off his last over, which included five wides.
Andy McBrine, dropped from the senior squad for the first time in two years, fared little better, although he did stop Tamim Iqbal reaching his century, thanks to a fine low catch at deep cover by Young.
They couldn't prevent Sabbir Rahman going to a hundred, from 86 balls with 16 fours and a six, and he then promptly retired, with the total at 285 for five with 10 overs remaining, to let the middle/lower order have a bat. The talented Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmuduallah duly put on 91 in eight overs, although Shane Getkate missed a trick by not persevering with Nathan Smith, his most economical bowler.
Apart from Tector, who shared an opening stand of 50 with James Shannon and 45 with Sean Terry, only Adam Dennison could take much from their time in the middle, with John Anderson, hurried into a false stroke, and McBrine, with a mistimed pull shot, the biggest disappointments - if only because they were the most experienced players.
But the Bangladesh attack was too strong for the Ireland tail as the last five wickets fell for 18 runs.
Tamim Iqbal c Young b McBrine 86
Soumya Sarkar c Kane b Young 17
Sabbir Rahman retired out 100
Shakib Al Hasan c Young b Getkate 44
Mo Hossain c Young b McBrine 31
Mushfiqur Rahi c Grassi b Getkate 41
Mahmudullah c Terry b Getkate 49
Mashrafe Mortaza not out 8
Mehidy Hassan not out 0
Extras (5b 3lb 1nb 9w) 18
Total (7 wkts, 50 overs) 394
Did not bat: Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman
Fall: 1-44 2-147 3-211 4-271 5-285 6-376 7-390
Bowling: C Young 10-2-82-1, Nat Smith 8-0-48-0, T Kane 9-1-69-0, A McBrine 10-0-69-2, J Little 6-0-58-0, S Getkate 7-0-60-3
J Shannon c Roy b Hossain 31
J Tector c Shakib b Mortaza 60
J Anderson c Shakib b Rubel 6
S Terry c Hasan b Sarkar 22
A McBrine c Shakib b Mortaza 22
S Getkate c Mosaddek b Roy 9
A Dennison b Shakib 24
T Kane c Hasan b Rahman 6
J Grassi lbw b Shakib 0
C Young c sub b Rahman 1
J Little not out 0
Extras (1b 5lb 12w) 18
Total (41.2 overs) 195
Fall: 1-51 2-59 3-100 4-145 5-152 6-177 7-193 8-193 9-194
Bowling: Mustafizur Rahman 5.2-1-17-2, Subashis Roy 10-0-61-1, Mashrafe Mortaza 7-0-31-2, Rubel Hossain 7-0-35-2, Shakib Al Hasan 8-0-32-2, Soumya Sarkar 4-1-13-1
Bangladesh XI won by 199 runs