Cricket Ireland today announced the Intra-Squad teams that will play two 2-day warm-up games in late April. The games are set to give national selectors a good look at Test hopefuls ahead of the announcement of Ireland Men’s historic first Test Match team.
Head Coach Graham Ford, the 57-year old South African who formerly coached both the South African and Sri Lankan national sides, has just passed his fourth month in charge of Ireland and was speaking as part of the announcement of the two teams:
“These two warm up matches are clearly very important for all involved, particularly by providing contenders for the Test team to gain valuable game time and get into good touch,” said Ford.
“They also represent an ideal opportunity to watch how our fringe players shape up with a big season of cricket ahead. Unfortunately, the inclement weather this spring has meant that I have only seen a number of the lads at indoor training sessions so far.”
Andrew White, Chair of National Men’s Selectors, said:
“With the Test Match just over three weeks away, the inclusion of these fixtures is vital in terms of our preparation. The players involved will have the opportunity to push their case for selection, while hopefully spending some much-needed time in the middle.”
“While some players were unavailable due to examinations and injury, we look forward to seeing them in the Inter-Provincial Series throughout the season.”
“We are very grateful to both Merrion Cricket Club and Pembroke Cricket Club in hosting the games, especially given the recent weather conditions.”
The two 2-day warm-up matches will be played on 23-24 April 2018 (at Merrion Cricket Club) and 26-27 April 2018 (at Pembroke Cricket Club).
The Pakistan Cricket Board this week named their 16-man touring squad for Ireland and England.
The squad is: Sarfraz Ahmed (Captain), Azhar Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Sami Aslam, Haris Sohail, Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Saad Ali, Asad Shafiq, Usman Salahuddin, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Abbas, Hasan Ali, Rahat Ali, Faheem Ashraf.
Tickets are now on sale for Ireland Men’s historic first Test Match through Ticketmaster: https://www.ticketmaster.ie/browse/cricket-catid-676/sport-rid-10004