The Netherlands qualified for the World Twenty20 main draw following a dramatic six-wicket victory over Ireland in a run-feast featuring a record 30 sixes in Sylhet, Bangladesh on Friday.
Stephan Myburgh and Tom Cooper hit 13 sixes between them as the Dutch chased down a 190-run target in just 13.5 overs to advance ahead of Zimbabwe and the Irish on superior net run rate.
Myburgh (63 off 23 balls) hit seven sixes and four fours and added 91 runs in just six overs for the opening wicket with captain Peter Borren (31 off 15).
The Irish bowlers had no respite despite the departure of Borren and Myburgh in quick succession as Cooper got the Dutch team close with six sixes and one four during a 15-ball 45.
The Dutch power hitting completely overshadowed the Irish pair of Andrew Poynter and Kevin O’Brien, who smashed 101 in 45 balls for the fourth wicket to take Ireland to 189 for four.
Earlier, Elton Chigumbura’s 21-ball 53 took Zimbabwe past the United Arab Emirates’ total with 38 balls to spare and five wickets in hand.
Former Zimbabwe captain Chigumbura smashed six boundaries and three sixes to boost his team’s net run rate above that of Ireland.
Sean Williams took three wickets for 15 runs while Tendai Chatara and Sikandar Raza picked up two wickets apiece to restrict the UAE to 116 for nine wickets in their 20 overs.
All three teams finished with two wins in the qualifying stage but it will be Netherlands who join Sri Lanka, England, New Zealand and South Africa in Group One of the Super 10 stage.
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