India hammer Ireland by 125 runs in Women's Cricket World Cup

Colombo: India posted a comprehensive 125-run victory over Ireland for a third consecutive win in Group A to ensure a place in the Super Six stage of the ICC Womens Cricket World Cup Qualifier here on Friday.

India opener Thirush Kamini struck a career-best 113 not out with 11 fours and four sixes as India posted a challenging 250 for two. She figured in a 174-run opening stand with Deepti Sharma (89) who knocked up her second half-century of the tournament. 

The left-handed pair batted close to 40 overs in what was India's first opening century-stand in ODIs in close to four years.

Ireland, which had lost to Sri Lanka earlier in the league, could only manage 125 off 49.1 overs with leg-spinner Poonam Yadav the most successful bowler taking three for 30. 

Gaby Lewis (33) and Isobel Joyce (31) could only prolong the inevitable in sultry weather.

India, who lead the Group A standings, previously defeated Sri Lanka and Thailand while they are due to play Zimbabwe on February 13.

Kamini said in an ICC release: "Getting a hundred for India is always special. It was really satisfying to get runs today when the team required a good opening partnership. The ball was not coming on to the bat later in the innings so getting runs was not easy. I'd gone into the match aiming to get runs at a fair pace and succeeded in that."

Meanwhile, in a Group B contest Pakistan scored a huge 236-run victory over Papua New Guinea as openers Ayesha Zafar (115 retired) and Javeria Khan (100) flayed the attack to add 212 runs in 38 overs.

Pakistan amassed 276 for five in 50 overs and then dismissed PNG for only 40 runs off 24.5 overs, with young left-arm spinner Nashra Sandhu grabbing five for 11.

In another match, Bangladesh defeated Scotland by seven wickets with Rumana Ahmed putting in an all-round performance of 38 not out and two for 23.

Scotland were bowled out for 140 in 49.1 overs with off-spinners Khadija Tul Kabra and Salma Khatun bagging three wickets each. Bangladesh got to the target off only 37.3 overs with Fargana Hoque top-scoring with 53 not out.

In Group A, Zimbabwe registered their first win, beating Thailand by 36 runs.