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New Northern Knights captain Mark Adair on 2022 Inter-Provincial Series as fixture schedule released

New Northern Knights captain Mark Adair on 2022 Inter-Provincial Series as fixture schedule released
New Northern Knights captain Mark Adair on 2022 Inter-Provincial Series as fixture schedule released
©Cricket Ireland / Sportsfile

New Northern Knights captain Mark Adair gave his views and hopes for this season’s 2022 Inter-Provincial Series, as Cricket Ireland releases the fixture dates for the 50-over Inter-Provincial Cup and T20 Inter-Provincial Trophy competitions.

The premier men’s domestic competition will be livestreamed in full and will feature six rounds of the Cup competition, and three T20 Festivals. The domestic competitions are coordinated to fit around what will be the largest international home season ever for Ireland Men’s senior squad.

Leinster Lightning won the Inter-Provincial Cup for the eighth time in 2021, while the North West Warriors will defend the T20 Inter-Provincial Trophy.

Cricket Ireland announced the four core squads last month, which featured a new captaincy appointment at the Northern Knights. Irish international Mark Adair will replace the former captain Harry Tector, with Tector moving to Leinster Lightning for the 2022 season.

Speaking from home after his return from the recent ICC T20 World Cup Qualifier in Oman, Mark Adair said:

“Being named captain of the team where I’m from, there’s a huge amount of pride involved. I grew up in the system, and that to me is very important. I’m really excited to get involved and put my own stamp on things and see where we can go as a team. We get started in May and I know the whole squad is looking forward to that.

“I think the Knights’ squad is pretty well balanced, and I think we have the right team that can bring us forward into winning games.”

Asked about his ambitions for the new season and what fans can expect, he said:

“Ambitions are a bit of a strange thing. You obviously set yourself some goals - both personally and as a team, but I think this year as a leader it’s going to be different for me. I’m looking forward to making sure I can get the best out of the players involved in the squad, and trophies are certainly in that mix. Luke Georgeson returning is a big bonus for us, while Jeremy Lawlor and Ross Adair are players to look out for. Ross has just been picked for the Wolves, so it’ll be very exciting for him. We’re also looking forward to getting the likes of Josh Manley back from Munster this year and see what he can do in Knights colours.

“In terms of my captaincy, I think I’m pretty laid back. I will be making sure that we do the basics pretty well and have a good core fundamental as a group. I do hope to change the culture a little bit and trying to create a bit of an identity in who we are as a team and how we go about that going forward. I’d like to leave a legacy for the Knights that will be pretty easily followed on whenever I move on from the captaincy. Lifting a trophy would be great, but for me it’s more important that we instil a good culture and a good belief at the Knights to try and form ourselves a bit more of an identity than we have had in the past.”

And how important will the Inter-Provincial Series be in the context of the approaching T20 World Cup in Australia?

“Obviously, the Inter-Pros are pretty important in the context of this being a T20 World Cup year. Trying to get the senior players ready to play in Australia will be difficult, because it’s pretty difficult to replicate the conditions, but for us to pick the best squad travelling and for us to pick the best squad available to play for Ireland is all down to the strength of the Inter-Pro competition. If you go out a play a blinder this year in the Inter-Pro’s, I think it will be pretty hard for you to be ignored.”