Furred Umpire Says 'Give Afghanistan & Ireland Test Status Now'

The Furred Umpire, Cricket World's newest recruit, says that Afghanistan and Ireland should join the ranks of Test-playing countries with immediate effect.

Here's why.

1. We need more red helmets in international cricket. Since Zimbabwe stopped wearing them, there are too many countries wearing dark green. Let's mix it up and make Test cricket a more visually appealling experience.

2. They're good. Action like this deserves a bigger audience.

3. They'd both give Australia more of a game than England can currently manage. Or perhaps the rivalry they are developing would prove to be more competitive. We need a catchy name for the series, though.

4. It would stop England nicking Ireland's best players, playing them a bit and then forcing them to wait four years to play for Ireland again. Eoin Morgan and Boyd Rankin are obviously good enough for Tests, so let them play for the men in green.

5. Both sides provide examples of cricket as a force for good. The achievements of the Afghanistan cricketers miles away from their war-torn home have been well documented but it is perhaps overlooked that Ireland's cricket team is one of the few arenas in which the whole of the island - the Republic of Ireland in the south, and Northern Ireland in the north - work together, putting to one side bitter differences that have caused conflict for decades.

What do you think? How would Ed Joyce and Nawroz Mangal cope with Mitchell Johnson's bouncers? Could Afghanistan v Ireland become the new Australia v England. Or the new South Africa v Pakistan, or India v Sri Lanka?

© Cricket World 2013

Hi there. My name is Umpire Ted, but you can call me the Furred Umpire. I am an adventurer, a whizzkid and a lover of all things cricket.