George Dockrell has been named in Ireland’s 14-man squad for the ICC InterContinental Cup clash against the UAE at Malahide next month (June).
The Somerset spinner, who played a key role in Ireland’s recent World Cup campaign, is set to take part in the four-day game between June 2-5. He has been in fine form for Somerset Second XI and club side Taunton St Andrews since his return from Australia, with bat as well as ball.
The InterContinental Cup competition is organised by the ICC as part of its cricket development programme. It is designed to allow Associate Members of the ICC the chance to play first-class cricket matches against teams of similar skill in a competition environment and prepare them for eventual promotion to Test cricket status.
This year’s tournament has added significance as the winners will play the bottom ranked full-member in a four Test challenge.
Ireland have won the competition a record four times and are the current defending champions.
This will be Head Coach John Bracewell’s first game in charge of Ireland and comes ahead of a three-match T20 series against Scotland in Bready, County Tyrone next month. Those matches, on Thursday June 18, Friday June 19 and Sunday June 21, matches will act as preparation for the T20 World Cup qualifying tournament to follow.
Meanwhile Scotland are due to play their own InterContinental Cup clash against Afghanistan at New Williamfield, Stirling, also between 2-5 June.
They will warm up for that fixture by playing the UAE at the Ageas Bowl later this month. The squad for that warm-up game does not include Somerset’s Josh Davey – it gives a chance to some younger players a chance to show what they can do alongside more experienced players. However Davey, who was leading wicket taker in the World Cup for a period during the winter and played for Somerset in the recent first-class tour game against New Zealand, is expected to come into contention for the games in June.
Ireland squad for ICC InterContinental Cup game v UAE: William Porterfield (captain), (Warwickshire), John Anderson (Merrion), Andrew Balbirnie (Middlesex), George Dockrell (Somerset), Ed Joyce (Sussex), John Mooney (Balbriggan), Tim Murtagh (Middlesex), Andrew McBrine (Donemana), Kevin O’Brien (Railway Union), Niall O’Brien (Leicestershire), Paul Stirling (Middlesex), Stuart Thompson (Eglinton), Gary Wilson (Surrey), Craig Young (Bready).