Ireland break 13-year drought with crushing victory to earn Super 12 spot
It was an impressive team performance from the European side, with veteran opener Paul Stirling (66* off 48 balls) guiding Ireland past the West Indies score of 146/5 with more than two overs remaining.
Stirling the hero with powerful knock
While the West Indies' total may have been slightly under par on a good batting pitch at Bellerive Oval, Stirling took the game away from the Caribbean side with a brilliant piece of batting.
The experienced right-hander may have had just eight runs heading into Friday's cut-throat encounter, but that mattered little as he smashed the West Indies' attack to all parts of the picturesque Hobart ground.
Stirling set the scene with a massive six off Alzarri Joseph (0/39) in the third over and skipper Andrew Balbirnie (37 off 23) got in on the act as Ireland raced to 64/0 within the Powerplay.
The loss of Balbirnie did little to dampen the mood, as Lorcan Tucker (45*) came to the crease and a more composed Stirling changed his approach to expertly guide Ireland home.
Thirteen-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?
While the expectations for the West Indies in Australia were somewhat lower than normal given the absence of a host of former stars, the Caribbean side will still be bitterly disappointed they couldn't qualify for the Super 12 stage.
There were some positives for Nicholas Pooran's men, but the captain himself struggled for runs throughout the tournament and more consistency is needed if they are to once again reach the lofty heights they are capable of.
Veteran all-rounder Jason Holder (0/23) bowled well against Ireland and battled away powerfully all tournament, whole fellow pacer Alzarri Joseph also showed some good signs.
But it was left to too few, 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.
Ireland: Paul Stirling, Andrew Balbirnie (c), Lorcan Tucker (wk), Harry Tector, Curtis Campher, George Dockrell, Gareth Delany, Mark Adair, Simi Singh, Barry McCarthy, Joshua Little
West Indies: Kyle Mayers, Johnson Charles, Evin Lewis, Brandon King, Nicholas Pooran (c & wk), Rovman Powell, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein, Odean Smith, Alzarri Joseph, Obed McCoy
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