Scots claim Euro U-19 title on better run-rate

Published: Saturday, August 9, 2008, 16:30 [IST]
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London: Scotland emerged as champions in ICC European U-19 competition despite persistent rain allowing only two matches to be completed in the three day tournament held in Glasgow.

Scots finished on the same points as Ireland after both sides won their opening matches on Tuesday, but the hosts finished with a higher net run-rate to claim the title from the defending champion. The Scots produced a convincing 9-wicket victory over Denmark at Hamilton Crescent on day one.

Scots bowled out the Danes for 91 in 22.3 overs and reached the target in 17.2 overs for the loss just one wicket. Denmark opting to bat got off to a bad start losing three wickets in the very first over.The eventful over bowled by Calum Macleod had everything: couple of wides, boundary hits and three wickets.

The first wicket came in the shape of run-out when the batsmen chose to run a third hen only two was possible, and soon after that Macleod sent the stumps flying with two onsecutive deliveries.

Denmark never really recovered from that start, and some excellent fielding from Scots meant that Danes could only make 91 in 23 over. Lars Boldt top scored with 24. Calum Macleod and Matthew Parker both took three wickets for Scots.

Scotland scored quickly in pursuit of the low target, and Freddie Coleman batted especially well for his 45, scored from 41 balls. Fellow opener Marc Petrie was the only wicket to fall, out for 45 with the score on 24. Coleman put on 68 for the second wicket with Ewan Chalmers as Scotland
reached their target in the 18th over. And this quick run chase helped Scots clinch title.

Defending champion Ireland too started the campaign on a winning note with a nine wicket win over the Netherlands at Greenock. However it proved insufficient in Eire's cause.

Ireland won the toss and put the Netherlands in to bat. Steven De Bruin scored 14 opening the batting, before he fell with only his runs on the board. Mels Hartman and Bob Entrop then put on 67 for the second wicket, aided by several wides from the Irish bowlers.

After that partnership, Ireland tightened the reins and some economical bowling from captain Andrew Balbirnie - eleven runs from his ten overs - and 3/21 from John Blakiston-Houston kept the Dutch score down. Captain Graeme Davey was the only other Dutch batsman to get a start,
top-scoring with 34 as the Netherlands was bowled out for 139.

Ireland set about its run chase quickly, attacking the Dutch spin bowling. Captain Balbirnie led from the front with a fine unbeaten 63, putting on 84 for the first wicket with Adrian D'Arcy as Ireland reached its target of 140 in exactly 35 overs, winning by nine wickets.

The unpredictable British weather put a halt to day two and three fixtures as persistent rain forced the teams stay in dressing room.

The Scot's victory prevented the Irish from claiming their third European U19 title in as many years.

Next year's event will be part of the qualifying process for the 2010 ICC U-19 World Cup, with the top two European teams going on to compete in the ICC U-19 World Cup Qualifier, from which five teams will join the ten ICC full members plus host Kenya in 2010.


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