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Tim Murtagh stars as Ireland end dream first day with 122-run lead over England

by Saurabh Sharma Jul 25, 2019 • 11:53 AM

London, July 25: Ireland, led by veteran pacer Tim Murtagh's maiden five-for in international cricket, stunned the cricketing world with their performance as they ended day 1 with a 122-run lead over England in the one-off Test here at Lord's, where a little more than a week ago, the hosts lifted the 50-over World Cup.

London-born pacer Murtagh, 37, returned spectacular figures of 5/13 in nine overs as Mark Adair (3/32) and Boyd Rankin (2/5), who became the first player in over seven decades to play Test cricket for and against England, supported him well. 

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England were bundled out for 85 in 23.4 overs after opting to bat.

Ireland, in reply, were dismissed for 207 as Andrew Balbirnie top-scored with 55 off 69 balls (10x4) -- the only fifty on either side so far in the match -- with pacers Sam Curran (3/28), Olly Stone (3/29) and Stuart Broad (3/60) taking three wickets apiece.

At stumps, England openers Jack Leach (0 batting) faced six balls from star of the day Murtagh without scoring a run with Rory Burns (0 batting) at the other end.The day belonged to Murtagh who bagged his 14th first-class five-for at Lord's - but the first to get him on the honours board.

For England, Joe Denly top-scored with 23 while 25-year old fast bowler Stone played an entertaining 18-ball 19, his cameo laced with four good looking boundaries.

England, who got past New Zealand on more number of boundaries hit in the rip-roaring final on July 14 where both the match and the Super Over ended in ties, had five World Cup winners in their ranks.But together, all of them failed collectively as the Irish ran riot at lunch on Day 1 of the four-day affair.Ireland were at it from the word go with Adair having debutant Jason Roy plumb in front in the second over itself, only for the umpire to call it a no ball.

Roy, who had a brilliant World Cup, could not make the most of the reprieve, getting caught by Paul Stirling at first slip off Murtagh for 5.

Joe Denly looked good for his 23 off 28 balls (4x4) but Adair trapped him in front with a delivery that shaped back beautifully into his pads on a tight line.

Rory Burns (6) was caught behind by wicketkeeper Gary Wilson off Murtagh and England could never recover from there with skipper Joe Root falling for just 2, lbw by Adair.

The five World Cup winners in the England team managed just seven runs among them as Jonny Bairstow, Moeen Ali and Chris Woakes all failed to trouble the scorers.

Ali's wicket was Murtagh's fifer as he and his Ireland teammates rejoiced their finest day yet in Test cricket. Sam Curran scored a quickfire 18 before Rankin got his back. 

In the end, Jack Leach remained not out on 1 as veteran pacer Stuart Broad (3) also failed to make the most of his batting skills.Ireland lost their openers, skipper William Porterfield (14) and James McCollum (19) were removed by Curran before Balbirnie and Paul Stirling joined hands for an 87-run stand for the third wicket. 

At tea, Ireland were 127/2.

England pulled things back just after the break, with Broad trapping Stirling (36) in front. Stone then sent Balbirnie's middle stump cartwheeling to remove the dangerman. 

Veteran Kevin O'Brien remained not out on 28 but around him wickets fell in a cluster.Murtagh swung his bat around for a 10-ball 16 helping Ireland cross the 200-run mark.

Brief scores: England 1st innings 85 all out in 23.4 overs; Joe Denly 23, Tim Murtagh 5/13, Mark Adair 3/32) vs Ireland 207 all out in 58.2 overs (Andy Balbirnie 55, Sam Curran 3/28, Olly Stone 3/29, Stuart Broad 3/60) England 2nd innings 0/0 in 1 over (Jack Leach 0 batting, Rory Burns 0 batting)