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Ireland close in on World Cup berth

Ireland thrashed the Netherlands by 88 runs in Amstelveen to move one victory away from qualification for the 2015 World Cup.

Phil Simmons’ men began the first of two one-day internationals in three days against the Dutch knowing back-to-back wins would secure their place in Australia and New Zealand.

They are now halfway to achieving that goal following a triumph underpinned by strong contributions from the O’Brien brothers and skipper Will Porterfield.

Opener Porterfield and Niall O’Brien compiled patient innings of 77 and 70 respectively, the former batting through until the final over of the innings, to help Ireland to 236 all out.

The Netherlands, who lost the toss, then came unstuck as Kevin O’Brien returned ODI-best figures of 4-13 from seven overs.

Fourteen overs were unused when Peter Borren’s men were dismissed for 146, with 55 from Wesley Barresi and the skipper’s unbeaten 34 the only contributions of any note.

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