Ireland squad announced for Women’s World Cup Qualifier; amendments made to tournament schedule
DUBLIN – A 15-player squad has been named ahead of Ireland Women’s participation in the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup Global Qualifier in Zimbabwe later this month.
Laura Delany, fresh from being named ICC Women’s Player of the Month for October, will captain the side, while Eimear Richardson (Player of the Tournament at the recent ICC Women’s T20 Europe Qualifier and ICC Women’s Player of the Month for August) will return to the squad after missing the Zimbabwe tour last month.
The squad is:
Laura Delany (captain), Georgina Dempsey, Amy Hunter, Shauna Kavanagh, Gaby Lewis, Louise Little, Sophie MacMahon, Jane Maguire, Cara Murray, Leah Paul, Orla Prendergast, Celeste Raack, Eimear Richardson, Rebecca Stokell, Mary Waldron. Head coach: Ed Joyce.
In addition, as part of Covid-19 protocols, the following players have been named as reserves:
• Travelling reserve: Sarah Forbes
• Non-travelling reserves: Alana Dalzell and Kate McEvoy
Carrie Archer, Chair of National Women’s selectors, said:
“Over the last few years, the hard work of Ed Joyce and the Cricket Ireland support staff has made our job as selectors a tough one - there are so many talented, emerging players within the Irish game at the moment. As selectors, we’ve been delighted to follow the development and progression of this squad. Despite some players being unavailable to travel this month, the quality and depth of talent that we have to call upon means that our final travelling squad remains a strong unit.
“Our selection priority for this squad was to provide Ed and Laura [Delany] with a group of players that not only covered all facets of the game, but also offered experience playing in major tournaments. We are acutely aware that despite being a talented squad of players, five of those selected only made their ODI debuts on last month’s tour. The value of the senior players in the squad will be more than just in playing talent, but in their off-field support and guidance, sharing their knowledge and experience of tournament cricket. Tournaments see matches come thick and fast, and this brings its own challenges at this level. The ability to impart knowledge to the newer members of the squad is also an important consideration for our selection discussions.
“We wish the squad well and have confidence that they will do Ireland proud on the field over coming weeks.”
Ed Joyce, Head Coach of Ireland Women, said:
“It is great to see the squad finally confirmed – especially the return of Eimear Richardson to the set-up. Eimear is not only a talented all-rounder on the field, but is a role model with over 15 years international experience to call upon. You can’t put a price on experience, and she is always an asset to the squad both on and off the field, and we thank Northern Districts for releasing her to play in the Qualifier.”
“We saw in Zimbabwe last month the confidence that our batting and bowling units gained from spending time training and playing in Zimbabwean conditions – especially how to adapt to altitude and dealing with the challenges of touring life. The facilities were first-rate, and that tour, I believe, saw a number of our players prove to themselves that they belonged in international cricket.
“After last night’s training session it is clear to see that the players have a determination and clear focus on making this tournament count. We know our squad, we have our game plans in place – we just need to execute our skills on the field and, if we do, we will give a good account of ourselves against some of the world’s best teams.”
The ICC Women’s World Cup Global Qualifier
The schedule was recently announced for the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup Global Qualifier, with an official warm-up match against Pakistan. In addition, Cricket Ireland has arranged a further warm-up match against Thailand.
For the tournament proper, nine teams will compete for three places at the 2022 Women’s Cricket World Cup, set to be held in New Zealand (the tenth team, Papua New Guinea, withdrew this week and will not be replaced in the draw).
The Qualifier groups are:
• Group A: West Indies, Sri Lanka, Ireland, Netherlands
• Group B: Pakistan, Bangladesh, Thailand, Zimbabwe, USA
As a consequence of the Papua New Guinea withdrawal, the playing schedule has been amended from previous advice. Ireland Women’s playing schedule is:
• 16 November: Ireland Women v Thailand Women (warm-up match, Old Georgians Sports Club; start 9.30am)
• 19 November: Ireland Women v Pakistan Women (warm-up match, Harare Sports Club; start 9.30am)
• 23 November: Ireland Women v West Indies Women (World Cup Qualifier Match 1, Old Hararians Sports Club; start 9.30am)
• 25 November: Ireland Women v Netherlands Women (World Cup Qualifier Match 2, Old Hararians Sports Club; start 9.30am)
• 29 November: Ireland Women v Sri Lanka Women (World Cup Qualifier Match 3, Sunrise Cricket Club; start 9.30am)
* All times referenced are local to Zimbabwe
The top three teams from each group go to the Super 6 stage, with group stage points carrying over to the next phase. From there, the top three after the Super 6 stage will qualify for the Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022 being held in New Zealand next year, along with the hosts, Australia, England, South Africa and India, who have directly qualified for the event.
As a bonus, the top five teams will also qualify for the next edition of the ICC Women’s Championship, which is expanding from eight teams to 10.
The ICC will livestream the matches on ICC.tv, as well as livescoring and providing a range of digital content.
If successful, this will be the first time that Ireland Women have played in a 50-over Cricket World Cup since 2005.