Ever since it shocked Pakistan at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007, Ireland has been developing into arguably the strongest of all the Associate nations. At the ICC World Twenty20 2009 in England, it beat Bangladesh to progress to the Super Eight stage. Having already secured qualification for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 by winning the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Championship, it went on to beat Afghanistan by 68 runs to in the final of ICC World Twenty Qualifier UAE 2013. It was its third title in four appearances at the event. Before the end of the year it picked up another trophy at the expense of Afghanistan, lifting the ICC Intercontinental Cup trophy with a 122-run victory in the final to record an historic treble of victories. There were a number of outstanding performances at the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier UAE 2013, including powerful batsman Paul Stirling whose 76 off 43 balls helped him finish as the tournament’s fourth-highest run scorer with 292 runs at a strike-rate of 148.97, while William Porterfield made 288 runs at a strike-rate of 149.22. Trent Johnston made 62 off 32 balls in his final T20I for Ireland. He has since retired and taken over as coach of Ireland Women. Seam bowler Max Sorensen took a wicket in every match of the qualifying tournament.
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