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Scotland, UAE grab last two Qualifier semi-final spots; Sri Lanka, Ireland finish unbeaten

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Heading into their final group stage match, Ireland had already secured a spot in the semi-finals but remained determined to maintain their winning streak. However, their openers Amy Hunter and Gaby Lewis failed to make an impression in the last group stage game, falling in consecutive overs to Iris Zwilling inside the Powerplay. 

Struggling at 14/2, Ireland found themselves in a precarious position until Orla Prendergast and captain Laura Delany stepped up to stabilise the innings with a resilient 38-run partnership. Prendergast kickstarted the recovery with two boundaries in the 4th over, while Delany joined the fray in the final Powerplay over, unleashing a six and a four off Silver Siegers

Caroline de Lange broke the partnership as soon as she came on to bowl and one brought two with Leah Paul falling in the very next over.

That was the last bit of respite for Netherlands as Delany came together with Eimear Richardson to take the game to the Dutch with an 89-run partnership off just 63 balls.

While Richardson provided steady support with a composed 32-ball 34, it was Delany who dominated the proceedings, taking the attack to the Dutch with a flurry of boundaries.

Delany reached her fifty off 39 deliveries in the penultimate over, capping off her stellar innings with a hat-trick of boundaries off the final three balls to propel Ireland to a commanding total of 143/4.

Netherlands needed to either win or avoid a heavy defeat to qualify for the semi-finals. However, their hopes took a severe blow as they stumbled right from the start, losing three wickets within the Powerplay.

Iris Zwilling broke the shackles after a quiet first three overs with consecutive boundaries off Prendergast but was dismissed off the very next ball.

Prendergast inflicted further damage with back-to-back wickets in the last over of the fielding restrictions to further dent the Dutch.

Babette de Leede and Heather Siegers led the Netherlands’ fightback with a 31-run partnership before Arlene Kelly struck in her very first over to get rid of the opposition skipper. The collapse began after the wicket as Delany brought herself on and scalped three more in her next two overs. 

With the lower order unable to withstand the mounting pressure, Netherlands suffered a collapse, ultimately bowing out for a mere 90 runs. Their defeat, by a margin of 54 runs, dealt a severe blow to their net run rate, plummeting from a promising +1.117 before the match to +0.111, falling below UAE’s +0.976 as the Netherlands crashed out of the tournament on NRR.

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