We are ready for West Indies, says Ireland coach

Ireland coach Adrian Birrell has warned West Indies that his side will be looking to repeat their stunning success over Pakistan when the sides meet at Sabina Park on Friday in the final Group D match.

Ireland coach Adrian Birrell has warned West Indies that his side will be looking to repeat their stunning success over Pakistan when the sides meet at Sabina Park on Friday in the final Group D match.

Birrell's team pulled off one of the greatest upsets in the tournament's history when they completed a three-wicket victory over Pakistan, who they ousted from the competition in the process.

Although Ireland and the West Indies are now both guaranteed a spot in the Super Eight stage, they are now doing battle for bonus points to carry through to that round.

Birrell has already targeted areas his side can improve, but after claiming a dramatic tie against Zimbabwe in their opening fixture before upsetting the form book against Pakistan, confidence is high amongst his team.

He said: "I think we can give a good performance against West Indies.

"Obviously, it will be tough, but we have gained some momentum, and we relish this opportunity to test ourselves against them.

"Realistically, we are a small cricket nation. We do not have the experience of the top 10 sides in this World Cup. We will just be going into the match to enjoy it.

"Everyone saw how we played against Pakistan. We played with passion, and with a smile on our faces, and so we will relish the challenge of taking on West Indies.

"We acknowledge that they have some wonderful world-class players, but we will do what we did against Pakistan and try our best."

Speaking about things his side can do better, Birrell said: "We will be looking for an improved performance against West Indies.

"We will be looking to bowl less extras. We will be looking to get more balls in good areas. We will be looking to be more consistent. We will also be looking to maintain the fielding standard and batting standard that we set against Pakistan."

Bennett King, Birrell's West Indies counterpart, is also refusing to take the fixture lightly despite the fact that both sides are through.

"We will treat it like a Super Eight game and it is going to be very important for us, since we want to go through in the number one position and carry the two points through to the next stage.

"We will play this match against Ireland as though it is a match in the Super Eight stage, to try to get ourselves focused, and ready to play in the next stage of the competition.

West Indies lost their last match against Ireland in Belfast, on their 2004 tour of Britain, by six wickets, with the Irish reaching 295 for four, so no one needs to tell King that his side's opponents can play.

"I do not think that Ireland have played above expectations (against Pakistan) because they have got a very sound bowling attack, and their top five batsmen have certainly done the job for them in the Associates' competitions," he said.

"On our days off, we have been 'coding' all the matches and making sure that we are ready for them with our homework. We have identified some strengths and weaknesses.

"They beat West Indies a few years ago with a lot of these same players in that side, and so it should be a good match. If we play to our capabilities we should still come out on top."

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