HomeCricketIreland Women set to play maiden bilateral series in India

Ireland Women set to play maiden bilateral series in India


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Ireland Women will play six white-ball games, all in January. © Getty

Ireland Women will be touring India later this year, with the Laura Delany-led side playing three ODIs and as many Twenty20 Internationals against Harmanpreet Kaur’s team. This will be the first time ever an Irish side, men or women, will be visiting India for a bilateral tour. The Irish men’s team was in India for the 2011 World Cup but never for a bilateral series.

According to information obtained from Cricket Ireland officials present at Nassau County International Cricket Stadium, Long Island, New York, where the Ireland men were involved in a Twenty20 World Cup game against Canada, the Irish women will be arriving in India on December 30 and will be there for two weeks. All six games will be played in January, the venues for which have not yet been finalised.

The ODIs will be part of the 2022-2025 ICC Women’s ODI Championship, which is being contested among 10 teams to determine qualification for the 2025 Women’s Cricket World Cup, to be played in India. “Hopefully, we will be there in India in 2025,” said an Irish Cricket official.

As per the latest ICC rankings, India are No. 5 in ODIs and Ireland are No. 11. In the T20I rankings, the Indian women are No. 3 and the Ed Joyce-coached Irish women are No. 10.

Although the Indian men’s side sporadically tours Dublin for short series – they might tour again in 2025 – the Irish cricket presence in India has traditionally been rare. Barring Josh Little, no Irish cricketer has ever played in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

No Irish woman cricketer was picked by a Women’s Premier League (WPL) franchise, although there are high hopes in Ireland that Amy Hunter, who is the youngest woman cricketer to have scored an international century at the age of 16, could be finding interest among WPL franchises. Jay Shelat, the Irish women’s team’s performance analyst, was part of the Luke Williams-led coaching staff of RCB’s triumphant women’s team.

There are also hopes within the Irish cricket system that the first bilateral tour by their side to India will encourage WPL teams to consider Irish women players.

For the record, the Indian and Ireland women were involved in six bilateral series, all outside India, and India have won all of them, the last one being in 2012.

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