England qualify for Super Eight following washout

Last Updated: May 05, 2010, 11:28 AM IST

Providence: England entered the Super Eight stage of the Twenty20 cricket World Cup after heavy downpour washed out their crucial Group D match against Ireland.

With each team getting one point, England qualified for the Super Eight stage, thanks to their superior net run-rate. England have a net run-rate of -0.452, better than Ireland`s -3.500 after the two group matches.

Hosts West Indies have already qualified as the top team from the Group D.

Put into bat, England went off to a dismal start but Eoin Morgan`s determined 37-ball 45 helped them eke out a moderate 120 for eight yesterday.

Morgan, who struck five fours, found good support from Luke Wright (20 off 24). The duo came together when the team was struggling at 49 for four and added 41 runs for the fifth wicket partnership to give a timely recovery.

Rain halted the match soon after Ireland started chasing the victory target of 121. They were four for no loss in 1.2 overs when the match was halted due to heavy downpour.

Though the proceedings resumed under a laden sky after almost half-an-hour, Ireland could add only 10 runs in 13 balls before the heaven again opened up and the players ran for cover.

Ireland suffered their only loss during those few minutes of play when opener Paul Stirling (0) fell prey to Ryan Sidebottom in the second over.

Ireland was 14 for one in 3.3 overs, with captain William Porterfield (4 not out) and Niall O`Brien (9 not out) on the crease when the play was halted for the second time.

Earlier, Ireland bowlers put up a disciplined performance to make the English batsmen`s life miserable on a damp pitch, with Boyd Rankin (2/25) and Kevin O`Brien (2/22) scalping two wickets each.

Opener Michael Lumb (14 off 11) started on an attacking note by cracking a four off paceman Rankin`s first ball through the fine-leg region.

But England suffered first loss when pacer Kevin O`Brien removed Lumb in the first ball of the fifth over, with Rankin pouching a good low catch at short fine-leg region.

PTI

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