Afghanistan are all set to host Ireland in India. The bilateral series, which will be played in March 2017, will consist of three Twenty20 International matches, five One-Day International and a four-day ICC Intercontinental Cup fixture. All the nine matches are scheduled to be played at The Greater Noida Cricket Stadium.
John Bracewell, Ireland’s head coach expressed his happiness over the move announcement and said that the series will give his team a chance to assess them in different conditions.
“This will be a great opportunity for our squad to test themselves,” Bracewell said, according to RTÉ Sport. “It’s always good for a team’s development to test themselves in different conditions, and there’s no better place than India to do that. I’m sure the younger players in particular will benefit from playing in subcontinent conditions.”
Welcoming the news,Richard Holdsworth, Cricket Ireland’s performance director, said that they had been waiting for a full fledged series for a long time.
welcomed the prospect of playing a bilateral series that has context. “This tour is exactly what we have been pushing for in recent times, where the national team plays across all three formats over a four-five week period, just like the Full Members have been doing for years,” he said. “Both sides are aspiring to become Test countries and to organise bilateral tours on a regular basis in series with context, rather than focusing mainly on tournament cricket.
“These matches will not only be part of the pathway to Test cricket for both countries, but also part of the World Cup qualification pathway.”
Both the teams recently played a five-match ODI series in Belfast recently which ended with both sides winning two games apiece. Till date they have played eight ODIs against each other , with Ireland winning five and Afghanistan three.