Ireland’s 2011 first big upset of the World Cup has proved that 2007 World Cup knockouts were no fluke. The clinical performance against England proves the team is ready to rise above the associate nation level and join the big league.
Ireland Speaks Loud for the Minnows
2011 World Cup was waiting for the big upset. Zimbabwe and Kenya were the front-runners for the hoefuls. They failed miserably. Netherlands came close to it. But could not finish the job against England. Ireland silenced the critics of minnows playing in World Cup with what could be called a thumping defeat of England, one of the main contenders of the 2011 World Cup.
Impressive World Cup Performances
In 2007 World Cup, they were responsible for knocking 1991 Champion Pakistan out of the tournament. Even in next round, they defeated Bangladesh and tied against Zimbabwe.
In 2011, in the first match they almost repeated the performance against Bangladesh by restricting the tigers to mere 205 in their first match. But the tigers spun a web to win in the end. In the second match, they played against the mighty big brother and neighbour England. Every Irish cricket lover dreamnt of victory against England. There was no better place than the World Cup. Now, with victory agianst Netherlands, and one more upset they can easily reach the next round, probably at the cost of England.
Historical Dates Of Ireland Cricket
1993 Irish Cricket Union was elected in ICC
2007 First time qualified for the World Cup
2006 First International ODIE against England
Highlights Of Irish Cricket Team
1855 First match was played under the umbrella of Irish Team.
1928 and 1969: Beating touring West Indies side
2007: Qualified for the 2nd round of World Cup.
2011: Beating England (WC Match)
Statistics of Ireland Team
Played: 60 ODIs
Impressive ODI record Demands ICC’s Permanent Seat
With their ODI record showing more wins than defeats, wins against major nations, it is time that the “Leading Associate” label should be changed to the ICC recognized teams. Their current status allows them to play ODI and T20 international. If ICC accepts their application for providing full status to them and include in the permanent member list, many would be sure of a better performance by Irish team than what Zimbabwe or Bangladesh have done over a period of time after getting the status.
Current Talented Players
The likes of Rankin, Johnston, Mooney, Dockrell, Stirling, Joyce, Brien brothers, Cusack, Porterfield and many more are waiting to erupt as major cricketing power. Considering their performance, it should be a matter of time when they get full status, if good sense prevails in ICC for the faster development of Cricket across the globe.
Does ICC Really Want to Expand Cricket
If ICC really wants to make Cricket global, Ireland has given it the right opportunity to silence the critics who believe ICC wants to keep Cricket running for few big nations. If after such impressive consistent performances Ireland does not get permanent membership, many players will rush to England and other nations to play for a country. If Ireland gets permanent membership, many more nations can look forward to improve performance and become part of the big league.
Will Ireland become another Zimbabwe or Kenya!!
There is news that some players of Ireland are trying to join English Cricket team, after the World Cup. Ireland can become another Zimbabwe and Kenya, if ICC delays the decision. Many will remember how due to internal problems good players left Zimbabwe and the team have become very weak since then, despite having talented youngsters. Non-recognition of Kenya even after being the first Associate Nation to enter semifinals of World Cup (2003), led to downfall of Cricket there. Today, they do not show much hope. Someone should step in to save Cricket by letting Ireland become a test playing nation. They deserve it.
For the pessimists and critiques of the thought of Ireland joining the big league, if Bangladesh can, why cannot Ireland now after proving they are consistent performers.