Ireland to play their first ever Test against Pakistan on home soil in May 2018

Ireland will play their first ever Test match against Pakistan on home soil next May, the country's cricket chiefs announced on Thursday.

AFP, Oct, 13 2017

Dublin: Ireland will play their first ever Test match against Pakistan on home soil next May, the country's cricket chiefs announced on Thursday.

Afghanistan and Ireland became full members of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in June, taking the number of countries who play the five-day format of the game from 10 to 12.

Since then Cricket Ireland has been looking for the right opponent for the historic first match.

File image of Pakistan cricket team. AP

File image of Pakistan cricket team. AP

"We are excited to welcome Pakistan to Ireland for our inaugural Test match next year," said Cricket Ireland chief executive Warren Deutrom.

"It has been our wish to make our Test debut in front of our own fans within 12 months of becoming a Test nation, and against a big team, so I’m delighted."

Pakistan are currently seventh in the Test rankings but were top of the pile as recently as last year.

"There is a lot of work to do from now to ensure that it will be an occasion to remember but we, and I’m sure our players and fans, can't wait to rise to it," Deutrom added.

Irish captain William Porterfield welcomed confirmation of the match, saying: "It’s fantastic news for Irish cricket. It’s going to be a bit special and it's always great to be a part of history.

"There's a special affinity between ourselves and Pakistan going back to the 2007 World Cup and they've been regular tourists here over the past decade.

"Test cricket is the pinnacle of our sport and I know how much this game will mean to not only the players but all involved with Irish cricket. It'll be another step on what has been an incredible journey for our sport in a relatively short passage of time."

The exact date and venue for the match — agreed during an ICC meeting in Auckland, New Zealand, this week — have yet to be confirmed.

Cricket has been played in Ireland for nearly 200 years but it was not until 1969 that they made the rest of the world game take true notice when they bowled out the Windies for just 25 at Sion Mills in a televised match.

Ireland have since established themselves during the course of several World Cups, recording one-day international wins over Pakistan, the Windies and England.

Afghanistan and Ireland joined an exclusive club that also includes Australia, England, South Africa, New Zealand, the Windies, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe.

Published Date: Oct 12, 2017 | Updated Date: Oct 13, 2017




Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4493 125
2 South Africa 3767 111
3 England 4497 105
4 New Zealand 3114 97
5 Australia 3294 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 South Africa 6386 120
2 India 6379 120
3 Australia 5948 114
4 England 6156 114
5 New Zealand 5432 111
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 2843 124
2 New Zealand 1925 120
3 West Indies 2395 120
4 England 2029 119
5 India 2965 119