Ireland pulled off an historic victory at the World Cup on Monday, chasing down the West Indies’ total of 7-304 to win by four wickets in Nelson.
George Dockrell grabbed three wickets as the associate nation had the struggling Windies on the ropes at 5-87 at Saxton Oval in New Zealand, before Darren Sammy (87) and Lendl Simmons (102) combined to resurrect the Caribbean side’s innings with a sixth-wicket stand of 154 runs.
Chasing 305 to win, Ireland all but cruised to the total, with Paul Stirling (92), Ed Joyce (84) and Niall O’Brien (79 not out) steering their team to victory.
The win means Ireland has secured at least one Test nation scalp in each of its World Cup campaigns since 2007.
Ireland had previously beaten Pakistan and Bangladesh in 2007 and England in 2011.
“It’s obviously fantastic. The way we chased those runs was great. It sets us up for the next few games and it’s a great position to be in,” Ireland captain William Porterfield said.
“We know what we are capable of and we believed going out the pitch today, that we could win not only this game but other games in the competition and we want to continue that.”
After electing to bowl first, Ireland captain William Porterfield’s decision paid dividends as they restricted the West Indies early.
Kevin O’Brien dismissed Dwayne Smith for 18, while Darren Bravo was run out for a diamond duck on the last ball of the eighth over to leave them at 2-31.
Chris Gayle (36) and Marlon Samuels (21) steadied the ship for a time before they were both dismissed in the space of three balls by Ireland left-arm orthodox spinner Dockrell in the 22nd over.
Dockrell struck again in his next over when he claimed the scalp of Denesh Ramdin to reduce the Windies to 5-87.
Only late hitting from Sammy and Simmons pushed the total past 300.
Ireland’s innings started strongly with Porterfield and Sterling combining for a 71-run opening stand.
Porterfield was out for 23, before Sterling then combined with Joyce in a century stand as they reeled in the target.
Joyce fell to the bowling of Jerome Taylor, sparking a mini collapse as Ireland lost three wickets in five overs as they staggered in the final stages.
But Niall O’Brien remained in the middle to ensure victory with five overs remaining.