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Ireland's under-19s take step closer to World Cup

Ireland's under-19s kept their World Cup qualifying hopes alive with an emphatic 123-run victory over Jersey at Upritchard Park yesterday.

The day after their record-breaking win against Denmark, it means that if they beat the Netherlands tomorrow — it is a rest day today — their superior run-rate will be enough to guarantee they will play in next summer’s final qualifying tournament when the top two go through to the 2012 World Cup finals.

It wasn’t straightforward for the Irish yesterday as they were reduced to 138 for seven in the 30th over, after losing five wickets for 27 runs, and it needed partnerships of 52 for the eighth wicket and an undefeated 42 for the last to haul them up to 238 for nine.

Jersey raced off at six runs an over for the first 11 but when Shane Getkate struck twice in the space of three balls, Jersey’s slide was uncontrollable. They were all out for 111 in the 30th over with captain George Dockrell taking four for 34 with his slow left arm and off spinner Andy McBrine chipping in with two for 12. A couple of suicidal run outs completed Jersey’s demise.

Ireland also enjoyed another fast start with openers Jason van der Merwe and Ryan Hunter scoring 61 in eight overs before Hunter was dismissed for 29 off 32 balls. That brought in Lisburn’s Adam Berry who had scored 133 against the Danes in a second wicket stand of 263 with van der Merwe. Yesterday he was bowled first ball!

Van der Merwe dominated the third wicket stand of 49 with Andy McBrine, but when he was out for 60, the first victim of spin, the middle order followed tamely and quickly.

Jersey had only two slow bowlers, however, and once their 20 overs were finished (with figures of five for 63) the Ireland tail enjoyed themselves.

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\[Peter Hutcheon\]Once the Ireland slow bowlers came on, however, the match took a familiar path and the Ireland Under 19s are one win and a tournament away from another appearance on the world stage.European Under 19 World Cup Qualifiers: At Upritchard Park, Ireland 238-9 (J van der Merwe 60, R Hunter 29, A Coughlan 27 not out, G McCarter 24, J Coghlan 23; J Faudemer 3-33) Jersey 115 (29.3 overs, W Falle 43; G Dockrell 4-34, A McBrine 2-12, S Getkate 2-22). Ireland won by 123 runs.

At Pollock Park, Guernsey 93 (36.4 overs) Scotland 94-1 (16 overs). Scotland won by nine wickets. At Eaton Park, Denmark 47 (42 overs), Netherlands 50-2 (13.3 overs). Netherlands won by eight wickets.

Tomorrow’s fixtures (11am): Ireland v Netherlands (Waringstown), Scotland v Jersey (Stormont), Denmark v Guernsey (Laurelvale).

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