Bangalore: Kevin O'Brien hit the fastest ever century in a World Cup match off just 50 balls and pulled off the biggest upset as they beat England by three wickets in a Group B encounter  at M Chinnaswami, Bangalore.


VIDEO: Irish oozing with confidence


It also turned out to be the highest successful run-chase ever in the history of the tournament with the previous best being 313 by Sri Lanka against Zimbabwe at New Plymouth in 1992.

Ireland, who earned the tag of giant-killers after ousting Pakistan from the previous edition chased a stiff target 328 in 49.1 overs courtesy an unbelievable 113 off 63 balls from O'Brien. No praise will be enough as Ireland were down in the dumps tottering at 111 for five when O'Brien and Alex Cusack came together.

He added 162 runs for the sixth wicket Cusack (47) and then 44 with John Mooney (33 not out). By the time O'Brien was run-out, Ireland were within sniffing distance of their best-ever win.

The moment Mooney hit Anderson for a boundary of the first ball of the 50th over, it sparked wild celebrations in the Irish dressing rooms as the 'Men in Green' rushed out to congratulate the two unbeaten batsmen Mooney and Trent Johnston  (7 not out).

O'Brien reached his century in 50 balls and hit 13 boundaries and six sixes in the process. He eclipesed Mathew Hayden's previous record of hundred in 66 balls against South Africa at St Kitts during the previous edition.

Ireland lost their fifth wicket at 111 and it looked as if England will be wrapping up the proceedings fairly easily. But O'Brien had other ideas.

When he started by hitting England's best bowler Graeme Swann for a couple of sixes over deep mid-wicket, little did anyone have an inkling as to what was to follow. Before one could realise, the O'Brien carnage started.

He reached his 50 in only 30 balls with a pulled six off Anderson. With an able ally in Alex Cusack (47off 58 balls), O'Brien added a whopping 162 runs in only 17.1 overs at an average of over nine per over.

The turning point was the batting Powerplay in which Ireland scored 62 runs in five overs courtesy O'Brien. He hit Anderson over deep mid-wicket for the biggest six off the tournament which travelled a distance of 102 metres.

When O'Brien tapped Michael Yardy for a couple, the entire stadium gave him standing ovation.

England: Andrew Strauss (capt), Kevin Pietersen, Jonathan Trott, Ian Bell, Paul Collingwood, Matt Prior, Tim Bresnan, Graeme Swann, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Michael Yardy.

Ireland: William Porterfield (capt), Gary Wilson, Alex Cusack, Niall O'Brien, Kevin O'Brien, George Dockrell, Trent Johnston, John Mooney, Boyd Rankin, Paul Stirling, Ed Joyce.

Umpires: Aleem Dar (PAK) and Billy Bowden (NZ)

TV umpire: Marais Erasmus (RSA)

Match referee: Roshan Mahanama (SL)