Rumana Ahmed was adjudged player of the match for her all-round performance © Getty Images
Rumana Ahmed was adjudged player of the match for her all-round performance © Getty Images

Ireland defeated Bangladesh in the final of ICC Women’s World Twenty20 Qualifier 2015 held at Thailand Cricket Ground, Bangkok today. Bangladesh won the toss and decided to bat first. The match went down to the wire as Ireland chased down Bangladesh’s target of 105 runs in the final ball. Ireland spinner Ciara Metcalfe picked three wickets for 14 runs and was instrumental in restricting Bangladesh in the first innings. Celila Joyce’s 32-run knock plus Laura Delany’s unbeaten 26 helped Ireland chased down the target. However, player of the match award was bagged by Bangladesh cricketer Rumana Ahmed for her all-round show; an unbeaten 38 and 2 for 16. READ: Bangladesh Women confirm spot in ICC Women’s World T20 2016

According to a report on ICC’s official website, both the teams had already qualified before the final itself for the ICC Women’s World Twenty20 in 2016. Ireland skipper Isobel Joyce was quoted saying after the victory, “It’s an amazing feeling and I’m so proud of my team for getting over the line in really tough conditions. Bangladesh are an excellent bowling team, especially Salma Khatun who was bowling the last over, who is so experienced and would back herself every time to keep any team under eight [runs].” Women’s World T20: Isobel, Cecelia complete line of 5 siblings from Joyce family to play for Ireland

“I’m really delighted for Laura Delany because she didn’t have it her own way during her innings, but she stuck in and was there to help the team and Lucy O’Reilly over the line. The team took it one ball at a time, which is important especially in Twenty20 [cricket], rather than thinking about the whole match which can overwhelm you, because if we needed 12 or 13 runs off the last over it might have been too much. I think the fact that we scored well in the first few overs took the pressure off a little bit at the back end.”

Meanwhile, Janak Gamage, Bangladesh Women’s coach said, “The plans was to bat first and get close to 115 runs, but unfortunately it just wasn’t enough. I thought our bowlers did very well throughout the tournament and though we’re disappointed today, we’ll look forward to playing in the World Twenty20. Our target is to play well during the tournament and win a few games, but we know it will be a real challenge.”