Irish crush 2-time T20 WC champs Windies, earn Super 12 spot

T20 World Cup 2022 Ireland beat WI

The portents are not good. In the first major upset of the ongoing ICC Men's T20 World Cup, two-time champions West Indies have crashed out after a crushing defeat against one-time pushovers Ireland.

The Irish qualified for the Super 12 stage of the T20 World Cup following a dominant nine-wicket triumph over the Caribbean side in Hobart on Friday.

It was an impressive team performance, with veteran opener Paul Stirling (66* off 48 balls) guiding Ireland past the West Indies score of 146/5 with more than two overs to spare.

13-year wait over for Ireland
The victory sees Ireland make it past the first round of a T20 World Cup for the first time since 2009 and their healthy group of supporters in Hobart started celebrating well before the final ball.

It was fitting that Stirling was at the crease at the end to ensure the 13-year wait was over for the Irish, given the 32-year-old was also in their squad in 2009 at the second T20 World Cup in England.

Much has changed over the years for Ireland, but Stirling's contribution at the top has been one constant that has remained and will continue over the coming weeks Down Under.

Where to now for the West Indies?
With the only two-time champions at this year's edition of the tournament bowing out at the first stage for the first time since the inaugural tournament in 2007, Cricket West Indies will perforce have to do some major stock-taking. 

There is no getting away from the fact that other than supplying "guns for hire" to all and sundry T20 leagues across the cricketing world, a once mighty legacy lies tattered and torn.

It would not be an exaggeration to state that never has such a decline of a country happened in team sport in the world. Sadly, it's cricket's loss.