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Ireland

Ireland cruise to historic ODI series sweep

Ire v Zim, 3rd ODI, report

A dominant all-round performance saw Ireland complete a six-wicket win over Zimbabwe in the final one-day international in Belfast on Sunday, 7 July.

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The 3-0 series sweep was Ireland's first home series triumph against a side since 2014, and their first home series win against a Full Member nation. 

Zimbabwe's batsmen have mostly struggled on tour and did so again here to be all out for 190 in 46.5 overs. Tim Murtagh followed up his five-for in the previous match with three wickets, for a series tally of nine. The batsmen scaled the target in 41.2 overs.  

 

Tim Murtagh was Ireland's star bowler finishing with brilliant figures of 3/39
Tim Murtagh was Ireland's star bowler finishing with brilliant figures of 3/39

After Zimbabwe captain Hamilton Masakadza chose to bat, the visitors lost three wickets inside the first 10 overs, including the crucial scalps of Craig Ervine and Brendan Taylor.

Masakadza became Shane Getkate's first victim as the paceman had the Zimbabwe skipper bowled for 23. The visitors lost wickets at regular intervals and Sean Williams' 103-ball 67 was the only notable knock. 

Murtagh returned an impressive 3/39 from 9.5 overs while Mark Adair, Getkate and Boyd Rankin chipped in with two wickets apiece. 

James McCollum top-scored for Ireland with a 69-ball 54
James McCollum top-scored for Ireland with a 69-ball 54

Openers Paul Stirling and James McCollum got the chase off to a good start with a 60-run stand. Stirling and Andy Balbirnie fell in quick succession as Ireland were reduced to 67/2, but McCollum got together with skipper William Porterfield for a 43-run stand. 

The opener brought up his second ODI fifty before Solomon Mire dismissed him for 54. Porterfield kept the runs flowing with Kevin O'Brien. While he fell just one short of a fifty, O'Brien comfortably took his side across the line in the 42nd over. 

The teams will next play three Twenty20 Internationals on 10, 12 and 14 July. 

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