IRE vs NZ: Michael Bracewell leaves Ireland shattered in tense final over

Michael Bracewell destroyed Ireland in a thrilling final over in the first ODI.

Michael Bracewell
Michael Bracewell. (Photo By Seb Daly/Sportsfile via Getty Images)
Karthik Nair

Jr. Staff Writer

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New Zealand came out on top in a high-scoring thriller against Ireland by one wicket in the first One Day International at the Malahide Cricket Club Ground in Dublin on Sunday, July 10. It was courtesy of a well-set Michael Bracewell’s final over heroics that made it possible for the Kiwis to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

Number 10 batter, Lockie Ferguson was bowled on the final delivery of the penultimate over bowled by all-rounder Mark Adair and it seemed to be a mountain to climb from there on for the visitors even though they had a well-set Bracewell out in the middle. Craig Young was given the responsibility of bowling the last over, but Bracewell ensured that he made Ireland snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Michael Bracewell single-handedly takes the match away from Ireland

At one point even this total seemed to be a far cry as the Kiwis had found themselves in after being reduced to 217/8 in the 43rd over. It was Michael Bracewell who had brought the visitors this far and it was once again he who ensured to get the job done for his side. New Zealand needed 20 runs from the final over to register a famous win.

The first delivery bowled by Craig Young was outside off-stump, but Bracewell handled the situation smartly with a flick shot over short fine leg for a four. The second ball was a full toss in the same area and the result was the same as well and eight runs were scored off the first two deliveries.

Young still stuck to the same area i.e. outside off-stump and this time he was dispatched into the stands as pressure mounted on the Irish team. The bowler then changed the pace of the next delivery, but to no avail, as he conceded four more runs after being hit between deep square leg and deep midwicket and brought the equation down to two runs from the remaining two balls.

Michael Bracewell hit the penultimate delivery for a six over long-on as the celebrations started in the dressing room while Ireland were left shell-shocked having lost from a position of strength.

Watch the video of the thrilling final over here.

Bracewell was adjudged the Player of the Match for his unbeaten 127 runs off 82 deliveries. His knock included 10 fours and seven sixes with his strike rate being almost 155.