Cricket Ireland chief 'excited' about Pakistan tour

Deutrom reveals decision will be taken after consultation with ICC, Pakistan security consultants

Cricket Ireland chief 'excited' about Pakistan tour

Ireland Cricket chief Warren Deutrom has revealed that his board is optimistic of successfully touring Pakistan in the near future.

Ireland are ready to play their first-ever Test match when they take on Pakistan on May 11 in Dublin.

There were reports in the media on Tuesday where it was claimed that Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) are interested in inviting the Ireland cricket team for a tour to the country.

Cricket Ireland chief Deutrom confirmed, while talking to the Express News, that the board is considering the PCB’s request, and will make a final call after consulting with the International Cricket Council (ICC)’s and local security consultants.

“Pakistan tour will be an exciting prospect,” said Deutrom. “The recent West Indies tour went very well and we also enjoyed watching the success of the Pakistan Super League in Pakistan. I can see a tour being welcomed in future years, but we would of course take the advice of security experts within the ICC and within Pakistan itself.”

Deutrom further went on to hail PCB’s support to Cricket Ireland, and expressed optimism in the team’s future in the longest format of game.

“We were delighted when the PCB agreed to play in our first Test,” he said. “While the PCB has been very supportive of Irish cricket over the years on the field, the two teams have built up a good rivalry since the 2007 World Cup. Pakistan are a very apt choice of opponent and we are looking forward to the encounter.”

Deutrom then allowed himself a moment to reminisce on all the work that has gone into Ireland getting Test status. “We are delighted for Test status but it has been a long road and a team effort, both on and off the field. In 2012, we set a target to become a Test nation by the end of the decade. In June 2017 that became a reality. The upcoming Test is a historic moment for Irish sport, but also an important moment for world cricket, as this is the first time in 18 years that a new member has joined the Test Match ranks. Preparations are nearly complete.”

Talking about the upcoming match, Deutrom revealed special plans and believes the crowd’s response will be great.

“Irish people are very happy about our first Test,” he said. “First day of the match is already sold out, day two is selling quickly. Given good weather, we are expecting a good public turnout for day three as well. The historic nature of the match has grabbed the attention of many and we hope to use the event to turn the casual fan into an engaged fan, and make cricket a mainstream sport in Ireland. We also have a special plan for the match as President of Ireland will attend the proceedings on day three as well.”

Talking about the pitch for the upcoming match, Deutrom said: “The pitch for the Test will likely be a typical wicket for this part of the world — with a bit of grass. But if we get some decent dry weather in the lead up, you can expect some bounce as well.”