Ireland selectors have announced a 15-member squad for their upcoming tour of UAE, where they will be involved in an ODI Tri-series involving the host’s and Scotland in Jan 2018 as team starts to prep-up for the all important World Cup Qualifiers in Mar 2018 in Zimbabwe.
Ed Joyce and Andy McBrine return to the squad after missing the last two assignments in UAE earlier in Dec 2018.
“We can’t underestimate how good the series win in Sharjah was against Afghanistan. It was undoubtedly one of the most satisfying for the players and staff in recent times,” said Chair of Selectors Andrew White.
“We’ve opted to leave Tim Murtagh at home to prepare for the long tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe as the staff continue to manage his workload.
“We are boosted by Ed Joyce’s return after his injury lay-off, while Andy McBrine will add his all-round quality to the squad,” added White.
Ireland Head Coach Graham Ford will be travelling with the team for his first assignment since taking over from John Bracewell in Dec 2017. Ford was present in UAE during Ireland’s I-Cup match against Scotland and the following ODI series against Afghanistan.
“The lads will be looking to build up more positive momentum prior to the World Cup Qualifiers, gaining confidence from those recent wins in the last month,” said Ford.
“There is plenty of hard work needed through this crucial preparation period. The players are very much up for it and realise the importance of making the most of this game time in the sunshine and outdoor facilities.
“We are grateful to the Emirates Cricket Board for hosting the tournament at relatively short notice.”
Ireland take on UAE on January 11 and 13, followed by two matches against Scotland on the 16th and 18th. Scotland also play 2 matches against UAE as part of the Tri-series. All matches in the Tri-series will take place at the ICC Academy grounds in Dubai.
Ireland Squad for UAE ODI Tri-series:
William Porterfield (Captain), Andrew Balbirnie, Peter Chase, George Dockrell, Ed Joyce, Andrew McBrine, Barry McCarthy, Jacob Mulder, Kevin O’Brien, Niall O’Brien, Stuart Poynter, Boyd Rankin, Simi Singh, Paul Stirling & Gary Wilson