First one-day international: Sabina Park, Kingston
West Indies 269 (48.5 overs): Brooks 93, Pollard 69; Adair 3-38
Ireland 245 (49.1 overs): Balbirnie 71, Tector 53; Shephard 3-50
West Indies won by 24 runs
A 155-run stand between Shamarh Brooks and Kieron Pollard helped the West Indies to a 24-run victory over Ireland at Sabina Park on Saturday.
The hosts were struggling on 62-4 before Brooks (93) and skipper Pollard (69) put on a decisive partnership.
West Indies were dismissed for 269 and Ireland were well set on 165-1 before the fall of Andrew Balbirnie (71) triggered a collapse.
Romario Shepherd took 3-50 as the tourists were bowled out for 245.
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Ireland were already missing key batsman Paul Stirling and Shane Getkate because of Covid-19 before Simi Singh and Ben White were ruled out on Saturday morning after testing positive – the pair are awaiting results of PCR tests.
The Irish elected to field in the World Cup Super League game and it looked like a good decision before Brooks and Pollard brought the Windies to 217-4. The final six wickets fell relatively cheaply and the Irish were very much still in the game.
Kieron Pollard hit four sixes in his 69 to help the hosts to victory over Ireland
Mark Adair (3-38) and Craig Young (3-56) were the best of the Irish attack and they gave their side a decent chance of repeating the famous victory over the West Indies at the 2015 World Cup.
William Porterfield fell for a duck before Andy McBrine (39) retired hurt after being hit on the helmet with the score on 62-1, but it was only a temporary setback as Harry Tector (53) impressed at number four.
Balbirne and Tector flourished as they added 103 runs but Ireland slumped from 165-1 to 194-6 to put the hosts in control. Mark Adair smashed an unbeaten 21 from just nine balls but Ireland finished 24 runs shy with five balls remaining.
"I thought the fielding effort was good, but I thought we could have bowled a bit better up the top and made them play on the front foot a bit more, just for that bit of nip there was early on," said Balbirnie.
"In the chase, when myself and Harry got out it turned the tide of the match. That was disappointing for both me and Harry – we talk about guys winning matches for Ireland and it was one of those opportunities for one of us to do that.
"We set up a run chase that is pretty much our blueprint, so not to get over the line is hard to take at the moment, but we've got two more games to put it right."
The teams meet again in the second ODI on Tuesday with the final match of the Sabina Park series three days later.