William Porterfield: ‘I don’t see our win over West Indies as an upset’

Ireland captain William Porterfield speaks after his team’s victory over the West Indies in the World Cup cricket 2015 match at Nelson on Monday.

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Ireland captain William Porterfield speaks after his team’s victory over the West Indies in the World Cup cricket 2015 match at Nelson on Monday. ICC Cricket World Cup 2015: Full coverage

Q: William, congratulations. 300-run chase in the World Cup, only one result for Ireland?
William Porterfield (WP): It was obviously a good form and one of the few times now I think someone said there have been five 300 chases and we’ve been three of them. So it’s a nice stat, and it’s a good way to kick off a tournament with two points.

Q: Take it back to the start. A good start?
WP: Yeah, as I said of the toss, we’ve been here now for a couple days, and it did swing around and we closed right early on. In both practice sessions it was hard. So we thought we’d utilized that, and we did to a large extent in times putting pressure on them. The way Max and John started, and I thought Andy McBrine was excellent, and obviously Dockrell was picking up the wickets so all around it was great as well. We asked a lot for the start and they did that.

Q: The fact that you played two spinners, was that part of the game plan or all to do with the pitch?
WP: No, it’s just something that the way Bryan’s been going, he’s been forcing his way in. He’s bowled fantastically well the last couple of months. And that gave us a real headache, and we thought it was the best way to go with it. I think it’s going to be a bit of potential over the courses throughout the competition and see where we’re at in different conditions, where we play an extra seamer or whatever. So good decisions to have and good headaches to be having in these games.

Q: He did everything but take a wicket obviously. Tremendous his first game against a top team?
WP: What did he go for 26 I think he went for in his 10 overs. So that was a fantastic effort for himself. And if he goes for runs, it’s generally three good shots. I suppose. He doesn’t really bowl much. He’s pretty consistent.

Q: Congratulations! Fantastic victory! Were there any aspects of the game that maybe worried you by the fact that you let them get away 90 for 5? Was that any concern? Were you actually quite happy with the way things went for you?
WP: Obviously, you want to be looking to take more wickets. But I don’t think on that pitch you can take away anything from the way Lendl and Sammy played there. They played fantastically well and put it on a partnership. As we’ve seen throughout the day, the pitch was a very good pitch. It was very hard to take wickets on. So I think the way the lads stuck at it up front and picked up those wickets there made it slightly harder for them. They couldn’t go as early as they’d liked, and firm on that grind. Even the last 10 or 15 overs was very difficult when you’ve only got the four out. And that’s not the biggest ground especially with the wind. So I thought the lads stuck to their job well and set it up for the batters really.

Q: Joyce talked to me before he came out and said the batters had more to offer from what they were doing in Dubai, and it was obviously proof today. It must have pleased you it was partnership after partnership after partnership that brought you home?
WP: Yeah, it was. It was intent that we played with as well. We took the attack back to the West Indies. They came at us after a few overs pretty aggressively as well, and the way the lads stuck at it and kept scoring was great. Obviously, we knew there was a lot more in the tank from what we had been doing. But as I said yesterday, the way we prepared in the nets and how we’ve gone about things, not just on the cricket pitch but mentally as well, and how we’ve prepared has been great, so it’s nice to get the rewards on day one.

Q: Would you call this an upset or you’re at the stage where you don’t look at beating West Indies as an upset?
WP: No, I actually hate the term upsets, anything from members to associates. I don’t see why a team has to be an associate and a team has to be a full member. It’s like sure you’re ranked or whatever. It’s not like that in any other sport, so I don’t see why it has to be like that in ours. I don’t see it as an upset. We prepared to come into this game to win. We’re going to prepare to go into the UAE game to win. It’s where we’re at. We’re looking to pick up two points in every game, and as long as we’re doing the right things and building up to that, then we’re happy.

Q: Were you disappointed about the nine-day break now before the second match? Would you prefer a shorter break?
WP: It’s just one of those things. I think after that the games come pretty thick and fast. So I think we’ve got a long six to eight weeks or even longer since we’ve been away in Dubai. You’ve got to take a bit of downtime and utilize that as well and stay fresh. Obviously nine days can be quite a long time, but we’ve got a couple down days, and then we’re going to be back in Brisbane. But it is what it is. The games are going to come pretty thick and fast at the end, so we have to be fresh.

Q: Throughout both innings, you didn’t look like you had any doubts of how much in control of the game you were. Did it feel like that or were there times you were a bit concerned?
WP: No, I wouldn’t say concerned. They played very well in the last ten overs. But after we got off to the start and set the platform with the way everyone carried it on throughout the innings, it was a great feeling that kind of bred confidence. And we always felt under control and never at any stage during the rounds did we feel like we were under any pressure, which was great. We obviously had a couple wickets last there in the end, and that’s the way it goes. That’s cricket, but the game was played by then.

Q: You played alongside Ed for a long time with Ireland and you had a great season with Sussex. Have you ever seen him hit the ball that cleanly in innings like that? Everything seemed to come off the middle for him today?
WP: Yeah, he was striking the ball very well. He wanted to score more runs coming in there. He’s that kind of bloke. Like you said, I think he scored 1400 or 1500 championship runs last year in England, and that’s fantastic. To see him continue that on today was great. We all know what a quality player he is.

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