Ireland and Netherlands make it into Super Four stage of World Twenty20 qualifiers

Thu, Feb 11, 2010 1:32 PM

Defending joint-champions Ireland and the Netherlands joined Afghanistan and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) who stormed into the Super Four stage of ICC World Twenty20 Qualifiers.

Ireland showed steel nerves and overcame a dismal batting performance by defeating Scotland by 37 runs in the European derby in Dubai while the Netherlands routed Kenya by seven wickets in Abu Dhabi.

Afghanistan defeated the United States of America by 29 runs; while hosts UAE romped to a 42-run victory over a hapless Canada at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.

Thursday's results meant Afghanistan and the UAE topped their respective groups and will carry forward two points in the Super Four stage which will be played in Dubai on Friday and Saturday. In contrast, top seed Ireland and second-seed the Netherlands will start on zero points.

Ireland managed only 10 fours and a six in its 136-7 but the bowlers did the trick with former captain Trent Johnston showing his magic when he destroyed Scotland's top order which had needed to win the match in less than 15 overs to qualify for the Super Four stage.

Johnston finished with 3-20 while George Dockrell took 2-9 and Peter Connell bagged 2-17 as Scotland was bowled out for 99 with seven balls to spare. With that defeat also went Scotland's hopes of making it to the next stage of the tournament.

The Netherlands bounced back after Wednesday's loss to the UAE with a seven-wicket win over Kenya. Peter Seelaar took 4-19 and Mudassar Bukhari claimed 4-33 as Kenya was bowled out for 130 with two balls to spare.

The Netherlands had little trouble in its run-chase as it achieved victory with five balls and seven wickets to spare. Eric Szwarczynski hit a 47-ball 45 while Alexei Kervezee belted two four and two sixes in a rapid 33 that came off 26 balls.

Afghanistan bowlers put up a disciplined performance which was backed up by some smart fielding that allowed the Asian side to defend a 136-run target as the Americans finished at 106-7.

The UAE, which had qualified for the Super Four stage on Wednesday, maintained its unbeaten run by defeating Canada by 42 runs.

Now all eyes are on the Super Four stage and battle it out to see who can claim the two remaining places.

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