Ireland’s Thompson ready for World Cup showdown against Pakistan

Stuart Thompson (second left) pictured with team-mates Kevin O'Brien, John Mooney, Ed Joyce and Andrew Balbirnie, line up for the anthems before their game against India, at Seddon Park, New Zealand. Picture by John Cowpland/Inpho
Stuart Thompson (second left) pictured with team-mates Kevin O'Brien, John Mooney, Ed Joyce and Andrew Balbirnie, line up for the anthems before their game against India, at Seddon Park, New Zealand. Picture by John Cowpland/Inpho

Eglinton’s Stuart Thompson believes Ireland have what it takes to book their place in the ICC World Cup quarter-final.

Phil Simmons’ side face Pakistan in the early hours of Sunday morning in a Pool B winner takes all encounter, in Adelaide.

Ireland have already defeated Pakistan in a World Cup when they produced one of the greatest victories in their history when they secured a three wicket win in Jamaica on St Patrick’s Day in 2007.

“We know what we have to do, we know that we have to beat Pakistan,” insisted Thompson.

“We will definitely be up for that game, it’s a massive one for us as there’s so much riding on the game.

“I think if we play the way we have been and the way our batters have batted and bowlers have bowled then we definitely have enough to beat Pakistan, so it’s on to Adelaide now and we are looking forward to it.”

The 23-year-old had his first piece of World Cup action in yesterday’s Pool B defeat to India and while the eight wicket loss wasn’t part of the plan, Thompson did pick up a couple of wickets bowling Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan caught by William Porterfield.

“It was a great moment personally, but it obviously wasn’t the result we were looking for, but I think they played beautifully and the wicket was good for them, but yes it was nice to make my World Cup debut and it was great to be against India.

“I can’t really remember my first over too well, it was all a bit fuzzy, yes it obviously didn’t go according to plan, but I wanted that second over and I wanted the ball back to have another go at them and lucky for me I was able to put it into the right areas and get the rewards from it.

“I didn’t actually see the ball hitting the stumps, I just bowled it and then saw his reaction after he chopped it on, but when I saw the wickets lighten up it was a good feeling.”

Thompson did concede that Ireland were a little disappointed with the 259 runs they posted against the world champions and knew the half chances which John Mooney and William Porterfield had may have changed the game around.

“It’s a strange feeling, because many moons ago getting 259 against India would have been a great score, but I think now the way we have been batting in the tournament we know ourselves that we were below par and the collapse at the end didn’t help.

“We obviously wanted to get over that 300 mark and put a little bit more pressure on them early in their innings, but like I said they batted pretty well.