Rotterdam: Pieter Seelaar enjoyed a winning start as Netherlands captain, producing a superb all-round display to inspire a nail-biting four-run victory over Ireland in the first match of the Netherlands Tri-Nation T20I series in Rotterdam.
Ireland looked well out of the game at 96/8 in pursuit of 145 but a blistering innings of 57* from 29 balls by Simi Singh set up a dramatic finish. Singh needed to hit Paul van Meekeren's final ball of the match for six to claim victory but could only manage a single, as the Netherlands won by four runs.
Earlier in the day the hosts were put into bat and struggling on 52/4 when Seelaar walked to the wicket.
Tobias Visee (15 off 8) and Max O'Dowd (20 off 14) had given the Dutch a promising start but the former fell to the impressive Barry McCarthy (3/26) before three wickets fell for six runs, with Stuart Thompson dismissing the Ben Cooper for 14.
Seelaar held his nerve though, compiling 36 from 28 deliveries and sharing a pivotal fifth-wicket stand of 64 with Bas de Leede (33 from 35) to set the platform for a respectable score.
Ireland fought back strongly after that partnership, as Singh removed Seelaar and McCarthy clean bowled de Leede to pick up his third wicket. The last four wickets fell for eight runs to leave the Netherlands 144 all out after 19.5 overs.