Australia brushed Ireland aside in their opening World T20 2012 game by seven wickets at Colombo. Here are the plays of the day from that game.
Ireland’s shot of the game:
Among the few that they played, it was the first four from Paul Stirling that raised the Irish hopes.
Almost on the front foot, Stirling punched Watson through the covers for a boundary after that early loss of their captain’s wicket.
Australia’s shot of the game:
The six that brought up Shane Watson’s fifty. Batsmen hit sixes and they hit sixes but Watson’s pull over mid-wicket was so hard that was an assault on the cricket ball that could have earned his bat a penalty in the court of law.
Turning point of the game:
Not too often can the first ball of the game be called a turning point but for a side which had gone into the game with even odds of upsetting the Aussies, the wicket of William Porterfield turned out to be a body blow.
The intent was to take on Australia head on, which wasn’t too bad a tactic. Except that it was executed poorly.
Watson sent down a bouncer, Porterfield fell for the bait and unleashed the hook but could only get it down the throat of fine-leg. First ball.
Ireland never recovered from there.
Disappointment of the game:
It has to be the crowds. Or the lack of it.
Australia and Ireland may not entice too many locals otherwise but with the ticket prices as low as $1, it was a surprise that the stands filled only a few hundred spectators.
A few more turned up for the second game of the day, but the atmosphere was a far cry from what the organisers would have hoped for.
Talk of the game:
Pre-game, it was of Australia’s T20 ranking vis-à-vis Ireland. During the game, it turned into something nastier with players from both sides snarling and muttering niceties to other. Niall O’Brien and Watson were the protagonists of this battle which ultimately had only the umpire stepping in to quieten them.
Stunner of the game:
The track was not the easiest to bat on. To the naked eye there were a few that stopped on the batsmen, others that zipped through to the bat. So when both, William Porterfield and Shane Watson stated in the press conference that the pitch was a “beauty”, it certainly came out as a surprise.
Watson did admit though, that he expected the track to tire out as the tournament progressed.