Ireland lead at halfway mark in Belfast

Peter Chase and George Dockrell each took three wickets as Ireland secured a 79-run first-innings lead at the halfway stage of their four-day Intercontinental Cup match against Hong Kong in Belfast.

Paceman Chase took three for 50 and spinner Dockrell returned three for 46 to help dismiss the tourists for 237 in reply to Ireland's first-innings 316.

Nizakat Khan and Anshuman Rath, two of only four players to reach double figures, hit 69 and 73 not out respectively for Hong Kong.

Ireland, who have won their three matches in the tournament so far and are a point behind Afghanistan, are therefore in a strong position to finish top of the table.

That would see them secure a play-off against the bottom-ranked Test nation in 2018, for the right to play Test cricket.

Craig Young of Ireland takes the first two Hong Kong wickets. Pic: INPHO/Presseye/Rowland White
Craig Young of Ireland takes the first two Hong Kong wickets. Pic: INPHO/Presseye/Rowland White

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