Cricketing maestro Sachin Tendulkar narrowly missed, again, his century of centuries [lbw for 91] in the fourth, and final, test match against England as India failed to avoid a fourth defeat in the series.
England National Selector Geoff Miller said: “The squad we’re looking to take to Ireland involves a number of exciting young England players as we rest several players currently involved in the npower Test series against India.“By resting several players that have played international cricket since the start of the summer the opportunity has arisen for a number of talented up and coming players to continue their development on the international stage.
“We know from previous encounters that Ireland are a tough ODI outfit and we’ll be fielding a very strong England side that will need to play well.
“We’re also presented with the opportunity to provide Eoin Morgan with further leadership experience and I know he is very much looking forward to assuming the captaincy and developing his leadership credentials while in charge of a young England squad.”
Ireland captain, William Porterfield, makes an important point about the professionalism of his side
Ireland captain William Porterfield echoed the views of his coach: “This is the game everyone in Irish cricket has been talking about, and really looking forward to. It’s been a sell-out for five months, and there’s sure to be an incredible atmosphere at the ground. We’ve long shaken off the enthusiastic amateur tag – there’s now eight of us plying our trade in county cricket, and turning in consistent performances.
“All but two of our squad earn our living from cricket, making us virtually a full-time outfit, and our cricket has improved year on year, as our results show. This is a vastly experienced squad, with nine of the guys having played 100 times or more for us – even George (Dockrell), who just turned 19 last month has made 46 appearances, while Paul Stirling at 21 has played 81 times.
“We’re all aware we’ve lost the element of surprise, and also that there’s now a real expectation from the cricketing public on us to perform. We’re confident that we have the players in this squad to do just that, although we do realize that it won’t be easy against an England team showing such great form against India at the minute.”
Here’s the full list of the Ireland team, with their county sides.
William Porterfield (captain) (Warwickshire)
Alex Cusack (Clontarf)
George Dockrell (Somerset)
Trent Johnston (Railway Union)
Nigel Jones (Civil Service North)
Ed Joyce (Sussex)
John Mooney (North County)
Kevin O’Brien (Gloucestershire)
Niall O’Brien (Northants)
Boyd Rankin (Warwickshire)
Paul Stirling (Middlesex)
Albert Van der Merwe (YMCA)
Andrew White (Instonians)
Gary Wilson (Surrey)
We all know what happened the last time the two ODI teams met…