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William McClintock on the behind-the-scenes work pushing his game forward ahead of Zimbabwe series

William McClintock on the behind-the-scenes work pushing his game forward ahead of Zimbabwe series
William McClintock on the behind-the-scenes work pushing his game forward ahead of Zimbabwe series
©Sportsfile / Cricket Ireland
 

Big-hitting North West Warriors and Donemana batter William McClintock was delighted to be called-up to the Ireland Men’s T20 international squad last month, but knows that more hard work on his game is needed as he pushes his bid to fulfil his dream of making his Ireland debut.

McClintock, 24, has had an eye-catching season for the rejuvenated North West Warriors being used primarily as a late middle-order power hitter – being the T20 competitions third highest run-scorer (161 runs at 40.25, including hitting 9 sixes along the way) and scoring 106 runs at 53.00, including a memorable match-winning 72* from 46 balls against the Northern Warriors in an innings that saw 5 sixes and 6 fours struck in a devastating 67-minute stay at the crease.

While he earned his first senior international squad call-up in July for the South Africa T20I series, McClintock is yet to make his full debut, but is not new to pulling on the green jersey.

In 2016 he was part of the Ireland Under-19s side that played in Bangladesh at the ICC Under-19s World Cup. In the six matches he hit 174 runs at 34.80, with two half-centuries including a 58 against India Under-19s. The Irish Under-19s team that day featured three of McClintock’s current senior squad-mates – Harry Tector, Lorcan Tucker and Josh Little.

Speaking from the team hotel, McClintock said:

“While it would be absolutely amazing to make my international debut anywhere, if it was to be in the North West it would be pretty special. But to be honest, I just want to concentrate on training hard at the moment and giving myself the best chance and be 100% ready if I do happen to get selected.”

“The recent training camp at Millfield School over in Somerset was a great opportunity for me to get to hit a lot of balls in the nets and on grass wickets. The facilities there were top-class, and I made sure to put in a lot of hours batting and concentrating on range-hitting and working on my positioning when striking the ball. The week also gave me plenty of opportunity to work on fielding and fitness - and for me that’s something I’m eager to keep working on and keep improving on.”

Being a key figure in North West cricket in Ireland, what does he put recent successes in club and inter-provincial competitions down to?

“Last year’s All-Ireland T20 Cup run with Donemana was a fantastic, and from a North West perspective it’s great to see Brigade winning it this year. I think the current successes in North West cricket is just really down to T20 cricket being more suited to how we want to play our cricket. As for the North West Warriors, we’ve had a brilliant year and Gary Wilson and William Porterfield have a huge part to play in that. For me personally, I certainly wouldn’t be where I am now if they weren’t involved - hopefully North West cricket can keep going from strength-to-strength.”

THE FIXTURES

The schedule for the Zimbabwe tour of Ireland is:

T20I series:

  • 27 August: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men - 1st T20I (Clontarf, start 12pm)
  • 29 August: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men – 2nd T20I (Clontarf, start 12pm)
  • 1 September: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men – 3rd T20I (Bready, start 3pm)
  • 2 September: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men – 4th T20I (Bready, start 3pm)
  • 4 September: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men – 5th T20I (Bready, start 3pm)

Wolves match:

  • 6 September: Ireland Wolves v Zimbabwe XI – ODM (Belmont, start 10.30am)

World Cup Super League series:

  • 8 September: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men – 1st ODI (Stormont, start 10.30am)
  • 10 September: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men – 2nd ODI (Stormont, start 10.30am)
  • 13 September: Ireland Men v Zimbabwe Men – 3rd ODI (Stormont, start 10.30am)

THE IRELAND SQUADS

Ireland’s T20I squad:

Andrew Balbirnie (Captain), Mark Adair, Curtis Campher, George Dockrell, Shane Getkate, Josh Little, Barry McCarthy, William McClintock, Kevin O’Brien, Neil Rock, Simi Singh, Paul Stirling, Harry Tector, Lorcan Tucker, Ben White, Craig Young.

Ireland’s ODI squad:

Andrew Balbirnie (Captain), Mark Adair, Curtis Campher, George Dockrell, Graham Kennedy, Josh Little, Andy McBrine, Barry McCarthy, William Porterfield, Neil Rock, Simi Singh, Paul Stirling, Harry Tector, Lorcan Tucker, Craig Young.

Ireland Wolves squad:

William Porterfield (Captain), Murray Commins, Stephen Doheny, Matt Ford, Mike Frost, Graham Hume, Graham Kennedy, Jeremy Lawlor, Josh Manley, Neil Rock, Lorcan Tucker (plus two players to be added).

Watching and attending the series

  • The World Cup Super League matches will be broadcast live, with a list of channels carrying the matches released closer to the series.
  • Spectator capacity limits may be in place to ensure compliance with local jurisdictional COVID regulations. Tickets will go on sale shortly for the men’s internationald, with separate communications relating to ticketing to be sent out in coming days.