Maiden centuries for Leah Paul and Ireland captain Laura Delany secured a comprehensive 210-run victory for Ireland Women over the Netherlands in the second game of the three-match series, and in the process take an unassailable 2-0 series lead. It was the first-time ever that two batters have scored hundreds in the same innings for Ireland Women.
It was a record-breaking day for Ireland Women:
- highest team total in ODI cricket (337-8)
- highest winning margin by runs (210 runs)
- highest partnership for any wicket (Paul-Delany 236 runs)
- highest individual score in ODIs (Paul 137 runs)
Meanwhile, Cara Murray became only the fourth bowler to claim five wickets in an ODI innings (5-39).
Having lost the toss and been put into bat, openers Gaby Lewis and Paul got off to a solid start putting on a 38-run stand in seven overs, before Lewis (15) was trapped in front.
Amy Hunter (22) showed plenty of intent when she came to the crease, racing away to 20 off 19 balls as Ireland were ticking along at a run-rate of over five-an-over, but then a ball that stayed low caught her out and she departed lbw.
At that stage, with 14 overs gone and Ireland on 73-2, Paul was playing a controlled, patient innings in very hot conditions at the VRA cricket grounds.
Captain Laura Delany joined Paul in the middle, and the pair guiding their side through the middle overs. Paul brought up her half-century in the 27th over, and Delany followed that with a fifty of her own four overs later. Both batters seemed to score at will as their knocks progressed and in the 41st over it was Paul first to register her century, smashing a full toss through square leg for four off the bowling of Annemijn van Beuge. Her century came off 113 balls.
It didn’t take long for Delany to replicate her partner, as she reached her first ODI century two overs later, hitting one down to deep mid-wicket for two. Delany’s hundred was scored off 93 balls, with 9 fours.
Paul and Delany brought up Ireland’s first ever 200-run partnership at the end of the 42nd over, but their fantastic partnership finally came to an end in the 47th over in quite unfortunate circumstances – Paul drove hard down the wicket, but the ball clipped the hand of bowler Iris Zwilling and went onto the stumps leaving a stranded Delany to walk off disappointed, but undoubtedly thrilled with her innings. Their third wicket partnership of 236, beat the previous best of 154 by Clare Shillington and Caitriona Beggs.
Unfortunately, Leah Paul’s innings ended in the very next over, run out too, pushing for an extra run. Her near run-a-ball innings of 137 included 15 boundaries. While several late wickets fell, Ireland had set the Netherlands a massive total of 338 for victory.
It was a daunting task for the hosts, made all the more difficult when Cara Murray took a stunning diving catch at slip to remove the Netherlands star player Babette de Leede (0) with just the fourth ball of the innings. A 41-run partnership between van Beuge and Juliet Post steadied things for a while for the hosts until Post was removed in the 15th over by an Arlene Kelly catch off Murray’s bowling.
The Netherlands ticked along the scoreboard at a slow rate before Rachel Delaney and Murray struck to remove van Beuge (26) and Robine Rijke (22), as the hosts found themselves 86-4 after 23 overs.
While the scoreboard ticked over steadily, Murray took over in the 31st over, taking the wickets of Zwilling (17), Overdijke (1) and Lynch (0). Murray getting her 5-fer with the last ball of her 10-over spell.
Rachel Delaney took the final wicket of the game as Ireland took six wickets for the loss of just 12 runs.
The sides will meet again on Friday (11am Irish time), at the VCC Voorburg for the final game of the 3-match series.
Netherlands v Ireland, 2nd One-Day International, VRA Cricket Ground, Amstelveen, 24 August 2022
Ireland 337-8 (50 overs; L Paul 137, L Delany 109; F Overdijk 2-57)
Netherlands 127 (33.2 overs; A van Beuge 26, R Rijke 21; C Murray 5-39)
Ireland won by 210 runs