Published: Thu, May 17, 2018
Medical | By Jackie Banks

Ireland Test debut ends in defeat

Ireland Test debut ends in defeat

Botham received great support from a left-hander making his maiden Test fifty, the late Graham Dilley, just as O'Brien did from another left-hander compiling his first half-century at this level in Stuart Thompson. It was our first Test match and it was tough on the first day, we struggled a bit with the emotions.

Ireland, following on in the second innings in its debut Test against Pakistan at the Malahide Oval in Dublin, had a chance to enter the record books.

Going into the fifth day, hopes of a stunning win were resting largely on how many O'Brien and the Ireland tail could muster in addition to the lead of 139 they had built on Monday evening. And no Ruby Tuesday for Ireland.

Kane had played a major cameo role in O'Brien's 118 on Monday but there was little that the young Dubliner could do, alongside Boyd Rankin and then Tim Murtagh, as the Irish innings came to a premature conclusion a long way out from lunch. "I can't fault anyone at all", said captain William Porterfield. But I can't fault anyone'.

That miss proved costly, with Pakistan piling on 50 runs in the next 10 overs before Balbirnie made amends, helping to run out Babar on 59.

Pakistan's Shadab Khan and Imam Ul Haq (right), celebrate victory on day five against Ireland, at The Village, Dublin, on Tuesday, May 15, 2018.

But this Irish team will always attempt to throw a reverse-swinging spanner into the works and sure enough, they gave the visitors a major fright. Murtagh stepped up with two wickets to his name, Azhar Alin was out for 2 off the fourth ball, leaving the game well and truly on.

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Ireland became the ninth team out of 11 to lose their first ever Test match but there was far more to the story of this historic occasion at Malahide. Rules of the game were also changed as the lead limit for follow-on was reduced to 150 runs or more. "We've just got to start off well tomorrow, try and get as many runs as we can and if we get a crack at them try and get them a couple down early and see where we go from there".

"To get there, it's a great honour".

At first he was in partnership, once again, with Paul Stirling but by the 58th over Abbas was getting good reverse swing and it did it for the Middlesex professional, the sixth lbw victim of the match. The former England captain spoke to Mirror on the unique initiative, the upcoming India-England series, Virat Kohli's decision to play county cricket and 100-ball cricket.

Ireland crumbled to 130 all out in their first attempt at batting in a Test match and it could have been worse if it weren't for man of the match, Kevin O'Brien top scoring with 40 and Surrey's Gary Wilson supporting him on 33no, it could have been so much worse.

"The biggest thing was how we fought back with the bat in the second innings".

"All five days it was a hell of an effort". We are a very young side, we had two debutant players, but we were very confident whatever the target will come, we will chase it down.

Imam-ul-Haq steadied the innings and was on 33 not out at the end of the first session.

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