Ireland in a spot of bother

KINGSTON (JAMAICA): Ireland, put in to bat, was in some bother and had lost half its side for 89 after 22 overs in the World Cup Group D encounter against Zimbabwe here on Thursday. Opener Jeremy Bray, on 47, was holding the innings together.

W.T.S. Porterfield was dismissed in the very first over. C.B. Mpofu pitched the ball short and the Ireland opener edged to wicketkeeper B.R.M. Taylor. Taylor fluffed, but an alert Vusi Sibanda dived from second slip to take the rebound.

At the other end, Bray settled down and played some cracking shots, including a six over point and another that flew wide of fine-leg.

Ireland appeared to be settling when left-handed Middlesex batsman E.J.G. Morgan, the young star of the side, lost his wicket, prodding weakly outside the off-stump for first slip to complete a simple catch.

Morgan had scored four boundaries and was involved in an entertaining stand of 43 with Bray.

The revamped Zimbabwe began to assert itself and three wickets fell soon afterward. A.C. Botha went, shouldering arms to a ball that jagged in and clipped the top of off-stump. All the four Zimbabwe bowlers operating inside the Power Plays found success with seamer Elton Chigumbura taking two wickets.