India swat away Ireland challenge after Dublin clouds clear

By Sports Desk June 26, 2022

India crushed Ireland by seven wickets after rain clouds cleared at Malahide, delivering a clinical display in the opening T20I.

Late-afternoon wet weather in Dublin meant this was reduced to a 12-overs-a-side contest, and Ireland recovered from a rocky start to post 108-4 from their allocation.

Harry Tector cracked three sixes in making 64 not out from 33 balls, the highest T20I score by an Ireland batter against India, but the 22-year-old was the only member of the home team who made a substantial impact. They had been 22-3 at one point.

The hosts' total looked on the low side given the batting power in India's ranks, and that was how it turned out as India sauntered to 111-3 in 9.2 overs.

India lost Ishan Kishan for 26 and Suryakumar Yadav without scoring to successive deliveries from Craig Young in the third over, bowling the former and pinning the latter lbw.

They had 30 on the board at that point but were not slowed down by the twin blows, with opener Deepak Hooda's 47 not out from 29 balls the pivotal innings.

Captain Hardik Pandya bludgeoned 24 from 12 deliveries, striking three sixes, before being snagged lbw by Josh Little, by which time the victory line was in sight.


Too little, too late

By the time Little pinned Pandya for a prized scalp, this contest was effectively already over. Hooda had provided the glue that held India's innings together, so it was appropriate he was the man to strike the winning runs at the start of Little's next over, cracking the first two balls to the boundary to clinch the victory. Little's 2.2 overs cost 39 runs, while Young finished with 2-18 from two overs.

Harry in a hurry

These sides meet again on Tuesday, also at Malahide, and Ireland will be looking for more fireworks from Tector. His innings on Sunday followed a handy run of three prosperous T20I innings in February, when he clattered 24 from 15 deliveries against Germany, 35 from 27 balls against Oman and 50 from 37 against the United Arab Emirates.

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