Ireland Test Squad Gathers for Pre-match Events and Player Reactions
Tomorrow morning at 4.30am (GMT), the first ball will be bowled in the Ireland Men cricket team’s first-ever overseas Test match – and the anticipation for the occasion is not just contained to the fans.
The team gathered at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Dehradun yesterday for the Test trophy unveiling and squad photo.
Several of the players shared their views on the upcoming match.
Boyd Rankin said:
“As an experience, it’s going to be hard to beat the feeling around Ireland’s first Test last year, but it’s always very special to play a Test match for your country and it will always have a buzz about it. Once we take the field it will be down to business of trying to win a game of cricket.”
Kevin O’Brien said:
“Our first Test match at Malahide was a very special moment. And this Test will be also very special. Test cricket is something I grew up with, watching it on TV when I was younger. I think every Test match for an Irish cricketer will give you a buzz and something which shouldn’t be taken for granted.”
Paul Stirling said:
“I think there will always be something special about every Test match we play in. The rivalry between these two teams is what sets this one apart from others, both sides will go in believing they can come out on top.”
“Test cricket will always be different to the other formats. There is nothing better for a player than celebrating with team and staff after a hard earned victory, so I can only imagine it would taste even sweeter after a Test match. Everyone will want to be part of that first win which can be this week if we play our best cricket over the five days.”
Andrew Balbirnie said:
"It's very special to play Test cricket, it's the game you grew up watching on TV, the home England Tests with Richie Benaud calling the game. I'd sit there all day as a kid watching these games and hoping it would be me one day.”
"Representing Ireland in any format is a dream come true so to be able to be one of the first to do it in Test cricket is obviously an even better feeling."
· 15–19 March: Afghanistan v Ireland - Test Match – start time of 10am (local time) or 4.30am (GMT)
· A livestream will be available, with details posted on Cricket Ireland social media channels.
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