Home Sport Reception to mark Ireland’s first Test match against England

Reception to mark Ireland’s first Test match against England

Tánaiste Simon Coveney with London rose, Laura Kennedy

Ireland’s cricket team face off against England at St John’s Wood this week in the country’s first-ever Test match against their neighbours.

It will be Ireland’s third Test match since gaining full Test status in June 2017.

The last decade has seen Irish cricket take great strides on the world stage. World Cup ODI wins over Pakistan (2007), and England in 2011, helped fast-track Ireland’s quest for Test status, which was realised against Pakistan at Malahide last year.

Tony Elgood, Ross McCollum, Kate Elgood and Irish Ambassador Adrian O’Neill.

Cricket has been played competitively in Ireland since 1792 and in the first representative game between England and Ireland in 1855 Ireland beat England by 107 runs.

As recounted at a special reception for Irish cricket in the Irish Embassy on Tuesday, Irish Nobel laureates James Joyce and Samuel Beckett were notable Irish cricket fans.

The current head groundsman at Lord’s is Dublin-born Carl McDermott, who was at the event on Tuesday.

William Porterfield, Tim Murtagh and Kevin O’Brien.

There are 52,000 people involved in cricket across the island of Ireland, some 120 clubs, and 27,000 children registered in schools’ programmes, the reception heard.

Tanaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney, turned up at the Embassy because, as he described it, he and his family promised his long-time cricket-loving grandmother at her 99th birthday last year that they would take her to the England-Ireland Test at Lord’s.

As there are so many so-called Test debuts, the cricket authorities have agreed to Ireland’s request that the Test be four days, rather than the customary five days.

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