New York pitch got slower in second half: Canada skipper Zafar

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New York, Jun 7 (PTI) Canada captain Saad Bin Zafar on Friday said the pitch at the Nassau County ground got slower in the second half of their T20 World Cup match against Ireland which they won by 12 runs.

After putting on 137/7 in the first half, Canada restricted the Irish batters to 125 for seven to eke out their first-ever win of the tournament.

"The wicket got a bit slow today, so it worked to our advantage. We gambled with an extra spinner and I feel both myself and Junaid (Siddiqui) bowled really well," Zafar said at the post-match presentation.

The pitch at this venue has been in spotlight for being tough to bat on, since it has produced very low-scoring games with the mega clash between India and Pakistan coming up on Sunday.

Zafar, meanwhile, hoped that Canada will be able to carry the momentum into their next game against Pakistan.

"One game at a time, we need to enjoy this win and come back strong against Pakistan. We are here to play positive cricket," Zafar said while talking about his team's show.

Describing their win as a "proud moment", Zafar praised his side for a unified show.

"(It's a) very proud moment for the team. The way Kirton and Movva batted, we knew we had a good total to defend. We needed a good performance from the bowling unit and I am so proud of my bowlers for putting their hand up and delivering," he said.

Ireland captain Paul Stirling, whose horror run persisted with the bat as he was dismissed for a mere nine, hoped his side would improve in all areas.

"(It was a) tough loss, we weren't at the races today. The target was gettable and we didn't think we'd struggle too much," he said.

"We were off in all three facets today, we need to show a better game when we go to Miami and Florida. We don't want to look too far into the future, we've got USA next," Stirling added.

Nicholas Kirton, who hit a match-winning 49 (35 balls, 3x4s, 2x6s), said it was crucial for Canada to bounce back after the hammering at the hands of USA in the tournament-opener.

"Bouncing back from the first game was important. Trust me, it wasn't that easy. (I) just tried to get in, get the pace of the wicket. Honestly it wasn't that bad. There was an area in the middle of the wicket that was a bit up and down, but otherwise it was a good wicket to bat on," he said.

"(It is) very good to get our first win in the World Cup. Hopefully we can continue from strength to strength. Our next focus is Pakistan. Two spinners bowled very well (as there was a) bit of purchase on offer," he added. PTI DDV AH AH

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