Niall O'Brien hit two sixes and four boundaries in an aggressive 62 to lead Ireland to a 54-run win over Zimbabwe in a warmup match for the World Twenty20 on Thursday.
Left-arm spinner George Dockrell and seamer Alex Cusack picked up three wickets each to help hold Zimbabwe to 127-8 in its 20 overs, in reply to Ireland's formidable 181-5 at the Moors Sports Club.
Zimbabwe captain Brendon Taylor won the toss and sent in Ireland, which was 36-2 before O'Brien and Ed Joyce lifted them into a strong position with 83 runs for the third wicket. Kevin O'Brien who holds the record for the fastest century in the World Cup, made 30 off 14 balls including two sixes and two fours.
Seam bowler Christopher Mpofu returned the best bowling figures for Zimbabwe, 3-39.
Irish seam bowler Boyd Rankin trapped Vusi Sibanda lbw for a first-ball duck in Zimbabwe's chase. It lost five wickets in the space of three runs. Three of the middle and lower-order batsmen were dismissed without scoring.
Hamilton Masakadza top-scored for Zimbabwe with 44 including five boundaries and two sixes in 27 deliveries.
more in Fwire