The Ireland cricket squad for the forthcoming World Cup in Australia and New Zealand has been confirmed, with no changes made to the 15 players named last month for the training camp and tri-series in Dubai against Afghanistan and Scotland.
Captain William Porterfield is one of five players who will be participating in their third World Cup, along with the O’Brien brothers, Ed Joyce, and John Mooney.
Ireland’s selectors have also chosen six World Cup debutants in Andrew Balbirnie, Peter Chase, Andrew McBrine, Tim Murtagh, Stuart Thompson, and Craig Young.
“It’s fantastic to be leading Ireland in another global tournament,” said 30-year-old Porterfield.
“We’ve produced some wonderful performances over the years in World Cups, and there’s no reason why we can’t claim further successes in Australia and New Zealand.
“While we may have lost the surprise factor over the years, we’ve certainly gained a lot of respect for our brand of cricket which has been pretty pleasing.
“There’s a great mix as always in the squad, and the younger guys coming through are all hungry which keeps the more experienced players on their toes. Competition for places has been fierce and that’s got to be good for Irish cricket.”
Head coach Phil Simmons and his selectors have not yet announced any replacements, but have taken extra bowlers to the training camp in Dubai.
“We’ve got five extra seamers with the World Cup squad here in Dubai,” said Simmons.
“Max Sorensen, Graeme McCarter, Eddie Richardson, Tyrone Kane and Barry McCarthy will all bowl in the nets and will provide a great resource in our build-up.
“It’s our intention to have some additional players based in Australia to provide cover for the World Cup squad, and we’ll finalise those arrangements in the coming weeks.”
The final squads for all 14 competing nations are expected to be confirmed on Wednesday, when last month's provisional 30s are due to be halved - but along with Ireland's, those of England, Bangladesh and Afghanistan are already published.
Ireland World Cup Squad
W Porterfield (Captain) (Warwickshire), A Balbirnie (Middlesex), P Chase (Malahide), A Cusack (Clontarf), G Dockrell (Somerset), E Joyce (Sussex), A McBrine (Donemana), J Mooney (North County), T Murtagh (Middlesex), K O’Brien (Railway Union), N O’Brien (Leicestershire), P Stirling (Middlesex), S Thompson (Eglinton), G Wilson (Surrey), C Young (Bready).
World Cup Fixtures
10 February v Scotland (warm-up), Sydney
12 February v Bangladesh (warm-up) Sydney
16 February v West Indies, Nelson
25 February v UAE, Brisbane
3 March v South Africa, Canberra
7 March v Zimbabwe, Hobart
10 March v India, Hamilton
15 March v Pakistan, Adelaide
18-21 March Quarter finals
24-26 March Semi-finals
29 March Final
Here it is...our 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Squad pic.twitter.com/Rvhjuu89rW— Cricket Ireland (@Irelandcricket) January 5, 2015