Dangerous lightning cuts Ireland Wolves’ opening T20 short

(Cricket news) The Ireland Wolves suffered a two-run loss under the DLS method after dangerous lightning at the ground forced an abandonment of play mid-way through Namibia’s run-chase in the first T20 at the Wanderers Cricket Ground today.

Murray Commins, in his second match for Ireland Wolves, top-scored with 29 on a low-scoring pitch that rewarded disciplined bowling throughout the day. The Wolves batter successfully held the dominant hand over the Namibian bowling attack. Following his 60 in the Ireland Wolves match against Zimbabwe last September, the left-handed South African-born batter has made an impressive start to his time in the Green.

The match started 45 minutes late and was reduced to 18 overs-a-side due to persistent passing showers, the Namibian bowling attack struck in the first over itself. Jeremy Lawlor (0) and James McCollum (7) fell early, before Commins began to counter-attack. He struck two fours and a six in a 22-ball innings of 29, before unluckily falling to a spectacular diving catch at short third after middling a reverse-sweep.

The Irish batters looked very uncertain at times about the pace of the pitch, but continued to look to play their shots against a disciplined Namibian attack. Senior Namibian international Helao Ya France (3-12 from 4 overs) delivered an impressive spell of right-arm off-spin, and Nicol Loftie-Eaton grabbed two wickets through the middle overs, leaving the Wolves lower-order with much to do.

They needed quick wickets to build some sort of early pressure, but Peter Chase and Graham Hume delivered three wickets in the first two overs and all three were brilliantly taken by the Wolves fielders. The pick of the catches was a diving outfield effort from Graham Kennedy at deep square leg to dismiss the threatening-looking Lohan Louwrens for 6.

When Campher claimed the fourth wicket with just 34 on the scoreboard in the 7th over, the Wolves looked well in the hunt, and it looked more likely that they were closing in on what would be a dramatic low-scoring win. However, lightning struck  near the ground and dark clouds overhead stopped the game shortly after, with the Namibians ahead of Duckworth-Lewis by two runs and play did not resume and umpires called the match off, handing the home side a DLS win.

The two sides will return for the 2nd T20 of the three-match series at 2pm (local time) or 12pm (GMT) Wednesday at the same venue.

Also read: India get crucial win over Bangladesh to keep qualification in their own hands


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