Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Kevin O'Brien targets victory after hitting Ireland's first Test ton

Watch the moment Kevin O'Brien became the first Irishman to score a Test century against Pakistan in Dublin Watch the moment Kevin O'Brien became the first Irishman to score a Test century against Pakistan in Dublin
Rita Gibson | 15 May, 2018, 12:49

O'Brien performed similar heroics in Bangalore in 2011 when Ireland found themselves 111 for five in response to England's 327.

Kevin O'Brien, the younger brother, scored the fastest century in World Cup history in Ireland's incredible three-wicket victory over England in Bangalore four years later.

Ireland all rounder Kevin O'Brien ensured there is some twist in his country's debut Test against Pakistan at the Malahide Oval in Dublin on Monday.

The home side now is in sight of a possible draw against Pakistan, with just the barest sniff of an unlikely victory at Malahide.

Ireland resumed on 64 without loss in their second innings, 116 behind Pakistan's first-innings total, but they lost Ed Joyce with just five more on the board when he was run out on 43 by Faheem Ashraf's direct-hit.

"To get there is a great honour and hopefully now we've put ourselves in a good position to try and go ahead and win it and there's no reason why we can't", he said at the close.

The centurion looked to be visibly tiring at the tail end of the day and almost chopped Abbas on shortly after edging Amir wide of the only slip and probably should have been out leg before in the final over of the day but he and Tyrone Kane (8*) would end the day still out there on 319 for 7 having added an unbroken stand of 48 for the seventh wicket to take Ireland to a lead of 139.

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O'Brien, 34, has scored two centuries for Ireland in the 125 One-Day International games he has played.

Number three Andrew Balbirnie fell for two in the next over, again falling lbw to Abbas as the hosts' top order looked to be in danger of swiftly collapsing once more.

Ireland have an outside chance of winning their inaugural cricket test after Kevin O'Brien led a second-innings recovery with an unbeaten century to see his team lead Pakistan by 139 runs on Monday heading into the final day.

Mohammed Amir shrugged off a nagging knee problem to be the pick of the bowlers, finishing the day with figures of 3-57 as he reached 100 test wickets. The match was scheduled to begin on May 11 (Friday) but it could only start on Saturday after the first day was completely washed out due to rain.

But wickets tumbled along with their departure, before O'Brien and Stuart Thompson (53) steadied the ship.

The Ireland captain's 120-ball stay was ended on 32 by a slip catch, Paul Stirling was struck on the front pad as his bat made contact too late and when Gary Wilson edged to slip Ireland were still 23 behind with only four wickets in hand.

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