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Defeat to Oman was a shock to the system for Ireland.
Defeat to Oman was a shock to the system for Ireland.
Image: Barry Chambers/INPHO

'This is not over fellas': Ireland focused on getting World Cup bid back on track

The inquest into yesterday’s humbling defeat to Oman continues for Ireland’s cricketers.
Mar 10th 2016, 3:10 PM 2,504 1

IRELAND HEAD COACH John Bracewell has backed his players to rediscover their big tournament form and get the World Twenty20 qualification bid back on track tomorrow.

The mood in the camp was decidedly upbeat this morning as the inquest into the shock two-wicket defeat to Oman in Wednesday’s campaign opener continues.

Ireland were humbled by the tournament debutants, a result which leaves their hopes of progression hanging by a thread with two Group A fixtures remaining.

But Bracewell is maintaining a positive outlook and firmly believes his side can beat Bangladesh tomorrow and give themselves a fighting chance of progression.

“First of all it was disappointing but games of cricket go like that,” he said of yesterday’s loss. “We got ourselves into a position, fought back and I was really pleased, in the main, 90% delighted with the way we went about our business.

“It puts us in a difficult position but not an impossible one. We knew we had to win three games but now with the draw the way it is, Bangladesh tomorrow, we have to narrow the game in terms of beating them and forcing teams to win only two.

“The Netherlands side are a good side and they will probably tip over Oman and we could all end up on two wins and that will come down to that game on [v Netherlands on Sunday] should we and when we play well tomorrow.”

The Boys in Green, normally the side to produce upsets at global events, were second best for much of yesterday’s game in Dharamsala as Oman showed commendable fight and tenacity to seal a famous win.

Questions will be asked of Ireland’s approach in the shortest format as the pre-tournament concerns surrounding the batting unit largely transpired.

India World T20 Cricket Ireland Oman Porterfield and Gary Wilson in action at the HPCA Stadium. Source: Tsering Topgyal

Ireland were unable to defend 154 as Max Sorensen leaked 14 runs in the final over of the game but just like captain William Porterfield, Bracewell refused to make any excuses.

“That’s the nature of tournament play, they’re all pretty experienced to be honest and we were all devastated at the loss and perhaps even the nature of the loss – it was quite a shock,” Bracewell continued.

“Two guys [Sorensen and Tim Murtagh] who’d be banking it right throughout practise and pressure situations so it hit us like a bit of a shot between the eyes and we were all devastated.”

Friday’s game against Bangladesh will be Ireland’s toughest of the group stage with the Asian outfit beating Pakistan and Sri Lanka in recent weeks.

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But Ireland know now there is no margin for error and they will need to beat both Bangladesh and Netherlands to open up the possibility of advancing on net run-rate.

“William to be fair put it in perspective straight away when he came back from the news conference to his credit,” the head coach added.

“He had to answer to all sorts of people immediately after a devastation and we can all sit back a little and reflect but he has to give immediate replies under pressure.

“He not only conducted himself brilliantly with the media but came back into the side and hit reality straight away. ‘This is not over fellas it just means we have to win tomorrow and see where we are’.

India World T20 Cricket Ireland Oman Ireland fought back before gifting the game back to Oman. Source: Tsering Topgyal

“That’s a sign of great leadership in my opinion and it started at that point and it became easier for the management.”

When asked whether he would look to make any changes to his side for the second outing of the campaign, Bracewell offered that he was pleased with the performance and won’t be inclined to reshuffle the pack.

“To be fair, we play pretty well and as I said when we’re only losing the game because of two overs, and that happens in Twenty20 cricket.

“I don’t think we’re at the situation where we’re throwing the baby out with the bath water.”

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