IRELAND VS SOUTH AFRICA, 2022
Lorcan Tucker and George Dockrell kept Ireland in the chase with an entertaining 84-run stand, but that wasn’t enough © Getty
It was a case of so close yet so far for Ireland once again, who fell 21 short in a chase of 212 as South Africa went up 1-0 in the two-match series in Bristol. Fifties from Reeza Hendricks and Aiden Markram led South Africa to a massive total before a clinical show from the bowlers helped restrict Ireland to 190 despite a steely fight from their batters. With that, Ireland slipped to their seventh successive loss in T20Is.
That Ireland came so close was a testament to their improvement as a side. After slipping to 84/5, an unlikely revival kept them in the game until the very end. Lorcan Tucker and George Dockrell kept the crowd entertained in an 84-run stand. Lorcan smashed seven fours and five sixes in his 38-ball 78, while Dockrell scored a 28-ball 43 before the pair departed on successive balls. South Africa spinners Keshav Maharaj and Tabraiz Shamsi were quite the handful for the Irish batsmen. The pair shared four wickets between them as Ireland’s batters struggled to find answers against them.
Hendricks continued his good run of form – scoring his fourth successive T20I fifty – earlier after South Africa had lost Quinton de Kock and Rassie van der Dussen cheaply. The pair of Hendricks and Markram added 112 for the third wicket to set up the innings for South Africa.
Hendricks hit 10 fours and a six in his 53-ball 74, while Markram fell for 56 off 27, which included 2 fours and 5 sixes in successive deliveries as South Africa posted their highest total versus Ireland. The pick of the bowlers was Andy McBrine who picked up a wicket in his two overs, conceding just 12 runs.
Both teams will play the final game of the series on Friday.
Brief scores:South Africa 211/5 in 20 overs (Reeza Hendricks 74, Aiden Markram 56; Gareth Delany 2-31) beat Ireland 190/9 in 20 overs (Lorcan Tucker 78, George Dockrell 43; Keshav Maharaj 2-29, Wayne Parnell 2-36, Tabraiz Shamsi 2-37) by 21 runs.