|T20 Tri-Series Rotterdam|
|Netherlands 144 (19.5 overs): Seelaar 36, De Leede 33, O’Dowd 20; McCarthy 3-26, Singh 3-23|
|Ireland 140-8: Singh 57*, Stirling 17; Seelaar 3-25, Snater 2025|
|Netherlands beat Ireland by four runs|
The Netherlands held on to beat Ireland by four runs in the T20 Tri-Series opener despite Simi Singh’s late batting heroics for the visitors.
Chasing the Dutch tally of 144, the Irish slumped to 63-7 before Singh’s knock threatened to clinch an unlikely final-over win for Graham Ford’s side.
However, Singh crucially lost the strike to Barry McCarthy for two balls as he finished unbeaten on 57.
Dutch skipper Pieter Seelaar top-scored with 36 in the home team’s innings.
Seelaar was one of Singh’s victims as the India-born all-rounder also took three Dutch wickets.
Eighteen-year-old Bas de Leede contributed a vital 33 to the Netherlands innings with Max O’Dowd notching 20 before being run out by Singh as the Irish bowlers appeared to have done their job.
But after Stuart Thompson was dismissed by Shane Snater to leave Ireland’s reply on 18-1, the visitors collapsed as William Porterfield, new T20 skipper Gary Wilson, Kevin O’Brien, James Shannon and Stuart Poynter all failed to reach double figures.
Poytner’s dismissal in the 14th over left the Irish on 63-7 before George Dockrell put on 33 for the eighth wicket with Singh.
From a seemingly hopeless position, Singh clubbed three sixes and four fours to give the Irish an unlikely victory chance in the final over.
But crucially the Dutch then managed to get Singh off strike in two balls, halting the Irish momentum.
Ireland face the hosts again on Wednesday before two games against Scotland, the competition’s other participants, on Saturday and Sunday.