India will take on Ireland in Pool B Match 34 at Seddon Park in Hamilton, New Zealand on March 10. The contest between these two sides may not light you up as India has already booked their quarterfinal berth and the challenge against Ireland will be a near-cakewalk. However, the reality is completely different. After pulling off an amazing victory against West Indies, the minnow Irish team has proved that they are a team not to be taken lightly.
India’s journey in the ICC World Cup 2015 so far has been an all-win affair. Pakistan, South Africa, Afghanistan, and West Indies were all defeated comprehensively by the young Indian side led by skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni. India is on the top of the Group B and has qualified for the quarterfinals already. The match against Ireland will give Dhoni a chance to test India’s bench strength. Will Ambati Rayudu, Axar Patel, or Stuart Binny get a look-in before India takes field in Quarterfinal? (Also read: 2015 Cricket World Cup Schedule: Time Table, Fixture & Venue Details of all ICC WC 2015 Matches)
As for Ireland, the team began with a morale-boosting victory over West Indies– the first and a major setback in World Cup 2015. The Irish side continued their strong performance in their next match against United Arab Emirates (UAE) as they beat them by two wickets. In their third match against South Africa, Ireland faced one of the biggest defeats in World Cup history as they were beaten by a margin of 201 runs. The fourth match against Zimbabwe saw a nail-biting finish, which was eventually won by Ireland. (Also Read: ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 – Updated Points Table)
India has won all of their four matches and is placed comfortably on the top position in Group B. South Africa, Pakistan, and Ireland foccupy second, third and fourth place with Ireland having an advantage of playing a match less than the three. It will be interesting to see if William Porterfield-led side can create another setback.
Indian cricket is a well-known figure of complacency in the cricketing fraternity. Any complacency on March 10 may lead India to not only lose a match, but also hamper their momentum before the quarter-finals.
Ireland: William Porterfield (C), Andrew Balbirnie, Peter Chase, Alex Cusack, George Dockrell, Ed Joyce, Andrew McBrine, John Mooney, Max Sorensen, Kevin O’Brien, Niall O’Brien, Paul Stirling, Stuart Thompson, Gary Wilson, Craig Young.
India: MS Dhoni (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohit Sharma, Mohammad Shami, Stuart Binny, Umesh Yadav