Ireland will want to improve on their batting performance © Getty Images
Ireland will want to improve on their batting performance © Getty Images

Ireland and Hong Kong, will head to face each other, in the 2nd T20I of the two-match T20 series. An underdog-Hong Kong win by 40 runs, quite big-a-margin, in a T20 game, has put the hosts under some pressure. Ireland were left stunned, after failing to chase down Hong Kong’s total of 169 for 5, in the first T20 international at Bready in Northern Ireland. The Babar Hayat-led side by virtue of this have taken a 1-0 lead in the series and William Porterfield‘s men-in-green would be itching to level it up in the second T20 international. But will Hong Kong, let go off an opportunity to grasp what will be a series win worth remembering? READ: Ireland choose uncapped players for T20Is against Hong Kong

Hong Kong, riding on an important partnership between Nizakat Khan and captain Babar Hayat, set a target of 170 on baord for Ireland. Nizakat, opening the innings scored 62 off 43 balls, that included 7 fours and 2 sixes. He continued firing runs while a few wickets tumbled from the other end. Hayat on the other hand, scored 49 off 31 balls, that included 2 fours and 2 sixes. A decent contribution from Ehsan Khan, with 29 from 22 took Hong Kong to a score that eventually proved too much for Ireland. But Hong Kong would again be counting on the same pair of Nizakat and Hayat to score the majority of the runs in the second T20I. Of course, they would want Anshuman Rath and Tanwir Afzal to contribute with cameos in the middle and lower order.

Their bowling was brilliant as they were able to restrict a strong Ireland batting line-up. It was a combine effort that saw them through. Nadeem Ahmed, Aizaz Khan, Afzal and Tanveer Ahmed, everyone played their part and eventually were successful in claiming a win. They would again be looking to achieve that.

For Ireland, the batting needs to step up. Having been reduced to 24 for 4, it could never have been possible to reach a 170-run target for them. Kevin O’Brien and Greg Thompson did pose a bit of threat but, were soon dealt with, by the Hong Kong bowlers. After the sixth wicket fell, they collapsed like a pack of cards and were all out for 129, not even being able to play out the full quota of overs. The defeat would have surely left Ireland wondering, as to how they were done in by a less-experienced team.

Hong Kong will on the other hand, want to make most of the momentum that they possess. But knowing that Porterfield’s side will come hard at them, they will have to tick those boxes which remained unchecked in the last match. All in all an exciting contest awaits. If the visitors do script another win though, it will be a a huge upset.


Hong Kong: Babar Hayat(c), Aizaz Khan, Tanwir Afzal, Nadeem Ahmed, Tanveer Ahmed, Christopher Carter(wk), Ehsan Khan, Nizakat Khan, Waqas Khan, Adil Mehmood, Ehsan Nawaz, Anshuman Rath, Ninad Shah, Shahid Wasif

Ireland: Jacob Mulder, William Porterfield(c), Peter Chase, George Dockrell, Joshua Little, Lorcan Tucker(wk), Andy McBrine, Barry McCarthy, Kevin O’Brien, David Rankin, James Shannon, Sean Terry, Greg Thompson, Craig Young

Time: 8 PM IST; 2:30 GMT

(Karan Dewana reporter with CricketCountry, loves following and playing sports. He is a Team India fan and loves winning. Follow him on his twitter handle @karan13dewan)