Ashes heroes toil after solid start by Denly

England 203-9 Ireland 113-9 (England won by 2 runs (D/L))

England needed an Irishman to help them avoid another embarrassing defeat to a minnow in yesterday's one-day international in Belfast. Less than three months after Paul Collingwood led England to defeat in the World Twenty20 opener against the Netherlands at Lord's, he was at the helm again, standing in for the resting Andrew Strauss, as Ireland closed in on victory over the Ashes winners at Stormont.

Needing an unlikely 17 off the last over, Aussie-born Trent Johnston, on his 100th appearance for Ireland, reduced the target to nine off two balls. The fifth ball of the over went to long-on where Middlesex's Eoin Morgan, fielding as 12th man for Graeme Swann, palmed the ball from over the boundary back into play to save the six. In the confusion Ireland ran one short so even with Johnston hitting the last ball for four, they still came up three runs shy and England and Collingwood could flee Ireland with a win.

But there really should only have been one winner – and it wasn't England. After a three-hour delay, the Ireland innings was reduced to the minimum 20 overs and the victory target was 116. After Ryan Sidebottom's first two overs disappeared for 15 and Tim Bresnan's for 13, Ireland raced to 64 for two in the eighth over. Then the wheels came off as leg spinner Adil Rashid held a return catch to dismiss Paul Stirling for a sparkling 30 and Swann, Collingwood and Shah, with three wickets for 15 at the death, rescued England.

England were grateful to a new cap and an opening batsman, coming in at No 7, to help them reach 203 for 9. Joe Denly had played at Stormont two years ago, for Kent on Ireland's homecoming from the 2007 World Cup in a Friends Provident Trophy game and, from No 6, scored 102 not out off 109 balls. He obviously enjoys the Belfast venue. Yesterday, while his top-order team-mates struggled against an accurate but otherwise gentle Ireland bowling attack, he made 67 in his first appearance in a red shirt.

Ravi Bopara missed the celebrations at The Oval having been dropped and his return to international cricket was not one to remember. He lasted just nine balls before he edged Trent Johnston to Ireland's only slip and Paul Stirling held the catch.

Bopara's replacement for the Ashes decider, Jonathan Trott, was sent in first wicket down on his one-day international debut and he fared even worse, trapped in front, just five balls into his innings, by Johnston. Matt Prior failed to survive Andre Botha's third over, caught at long on, and while 29 out of 59 looked good on the scoreboard, his tally of 52 balls received was more relevant.

And it did not improve with Collingwood's scratchy innings. Nine off 23 balls was no help to his side at all and only compounded by his dismissal to leave them 92 for four in the 29th over.

England had opted not to use the one player in their squad more used to Irish conditions than anyone, Dubliner Morgan named as 12th man against the side he played for on 63 occasions, the last as recently as April in the World Cup qualifiers in South Africa. Instead it was his Middlesex team-mate, Owais Shah, who came in at No 6 but while the boundary was still off limits, his 21 off 32 balls at least improved the run-rate.

Denly, after an innings of 111 balls, but only three boundaries, was sixth out, the third victim of Johnston, and it was left to Wright to get England to 200, the minimum they could have planned for, even on this slow surface.

67

Joe Denly's score on his England debut in Ireland yesterday.

News
The author PD James, who died on 27 November 2014
people

Detective novelist who wrote Death comes to Pemberley passed away peacefully at her home, aged 94

Arts and Entertainment
Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
filmDirector said film would 'never have been financed' with ethnic minority actors in key roles
Life and Style
View of champagne glasses at a beach bar set up along the Croisette during the 66th edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes on May 17, 2013
food + drink(and for now, there's a clear winner)
News
people
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Irradiated turkey and freeze dried mash potato will be on the menu this thanksgiving
video
News
Andy Murray with his girlfriend of nine years, Kim Sears who he has got engaged to
peopleWimbledon champion announces engagement to girlfriend Kim Sears
Arts and Entertainment
George Mpanga has been shortlisted for the Critics’ Choice prize
music
Arts and Entertainment
Roisin, James and Sanjay in the boardroom
tvReview: This week's failing project manager had to go
News
Ed Miliband visiting the Holocaust museum in Jerusalem. The Labour leader has spoken more openly of his heritage recently
newsAttacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But are the barbs more sinister?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?