Cricket: William Porterfield aiming for more Irish success

Ireland captain William Porterfield ready for another World Cup qualifying campaign.
Ireland captain William Porterfield ready for another World Cup qualifying campaign.
  • No other sport in the world is reducing teams from competitions
  • Young North West cricketers getting a chance
  • Ireland start tournament as favourites

Ireland start their ICC T20 World Cup campaign when they face Namibia, at Stormont, on Friday.

John Bracewell’s side also face USA, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Hong Kong and Jersey in Group A and if they top their group they will have booked their place in India next year.

Skipper William Porterfield he believes this is just another tournament for the boys in green to continue to show what they are all about.

“Things have gone well so far but we just have to bring it all together on the day, starting on Friday,” he said.

“We have to go into these tournaments and win them and progress in World Cup’s, so it’s non-negotiable for ourselves being at a major competition, so when it comes to these tournaments we just don’t want to qualify, we want to win them.”

The former Donemana man also concedes that the International Cricket Council should develop the game rather than cut the number of teams at the World Cup.

The Irish narrowly missed out on a place in the quarter-finals, but may not feature in 2019 50-over format when the tournament is reduced from 14 to 10 teams. At the ICC’s recent annual conference the competition, which takes place in England, wasn’t even discussed.

“I don’t know what actually happened at the meeting but I just don’t think they discussed about increasing the World Cup, but until the ICC actually come out and say anything then my option, which I have made pretty clear, won’t change,” Porterfield added.

“No other sport in the world is reducing teams from competitions. In fact everyone is increasing participation and numbers from football to rugby.

“The European Championships have increased their numbers and the Rugby World Cup have come out and said the next two world cups they want to increase their numbers; so every other sport in the world is doing it apart from cricket.

We have to go into these tournaments and win them and progress in World Cup’s, so it’s non-negotiable for ourselves being at a major competition

William Porterfield

“So the board if they do make that decision and decrease the numbers at the next World Cup, then they need to come out and give us an explanation, so we have to wait for that announcement.”

Porterfield is hoping that Ireland will return to his old stamping ground in the not too distant future, after last month’s games against Scotland were a success.

“By all accounts it was a good few days at Bready, but obviously results didn’t go our way, but a lot of lads will have learned from those games against Scotland,” he said.

“Obviously Davy Rankin made his debut and it was good for the other North West men to gain more experience and get a taste of it and want more.

“As long as that is happening and they are getting that little bit of exposure then I know they’ll want more and look to break into the side.

“Qualifying for major tournaments and having a few players from the North West area in the squad, then it’s going to increase the sport no end.

“At the minute in the squad we have Andrew McBrine, Craig Young, Stuart Thompson and Graeme McCarter, who are all young lads who are still playing in the North West and playing for the Warriors and hopefully a lot of the younger players in the area will want to follow in their footsteps.”