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Ireland make history as they clinch dramatic series win over Zimbabwe in Belfast

They beat a full member in an ODI Series at home for the first time ever.

ireland History-makers: Ireland Source: Cricket Ireland.

IRELAND RECORDED AN historic win over Zimbabwe in Belfast today, beating a full member in an ODI Series at home for the first time ever.

A dramatic five-run win at Stormont sealed a series victory over Zimbabwe, their first home series victory against any side since 2014.

Ireland’s opening pair of Paul Stirling and James McCollum batted brilliantly from early doors, registering their first-century stand as a partnership as they laid a solid foundation for the hosts. 

On-fire McCollum was the first to fifty, his first international half-century, and the in-form Stirling soon followed suit.

Lorcan Tucker and William Porterfield also impressed, the former in particular, as Ireland went on to make history.

Tim Murtagh’s maiden five-wicket haul, a career best, helped Ireland clinch the win.

“It’s massive, a series win is rare, we haven’t had many in the last seven or eight years,” he said afterwards.

To be 2-0 up after with one to play – there are some happy people in the dressing room. We also just spoke of the determination to finish the job on Sunday and go three-nil up.

“We always felt we’d have to bowl well to make 243 a winning score, we were a bit disappointed we hadn’t finished 260 or 270.

CI Source: Cricket Ireland/Twitter.

“Generally, I thought the bowling and fielding display was excellent to keep them below that, so it was nervy in the end – but that’s 50-over cricket when you score 240 to 250, it’ll often go down to the wire. It was important for us to win a close one.”

He added: “It’s my first List A five-for, so it was nice to get that today. I spoke in the huddle about setting the tone and when I walked out I thought, ‘Right, I’m going to have to act on those words now.’

“It was important to get those three wickets early, and I thought everyone chipped in.”

Score summary from the second one-day international between Ireland and Zimbabwe in Belfast on Thursday

Ireland 242-9, 50 overs (J. McCollum 73, L. Tucker 56, P. Stirling 52; S. Mire 4-43)

Zimbabwe 237-9, 50 overs (S. Williams 58, R. Burl 53; T Murtagh 5-21)

Result: Ireland beat Zimbabwe by five runs

- with reporting from AFP

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