Photo Credit: Oisin Keniry
Irish leg-spinner Celeste Raack has been granted personal leave from the Ireland Women’s squad for family illness reasons, as the home side completes final preparations ahead of the first one-day international against South Africa tomorrow at Clontarf Cricket Club – the first-ever match Ireland will play in the ICC Women’s Championship.
Raack will not initially be replaced, with Selectors keeping faith with the remaining 13 players in the squad. However, a further assessment will be made after tomorrow’s game.
Last month, the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the 2022-2025 ICC Women’s Championship match-ups that form the qualification route to the ICC Women’s World Cup 2025. Ireland Women are set to host England, Australia, South Africa (starting tomorrow) and Sri Lanka, while the squad will travel to play Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and the West Indies over the four-year cycle.
This is the first time that Ireland Women are part of the ICC Women’s Championship, and – along with fellow newcomers Bangladesh – will join Australia, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the West Indies as they fight it out for qualification to the 2025 ICC Women’s World Cup. The tournament hosts (yet to be announced), along with the top five sides in the Championship standings will earn direct entry, while the two remaining spots will be identified through a global qualifier.
Speaking after training today, Ireland captain Gaby Lewis said:
“We’ve had a good chat after the end of the T20I series and we’ll take the positives from that series. We’re really excited about the first Women’s Championship games tomorrow. Going into the ODIs, we just need to remind ourselves to focus on getting our processes right and not get too carried away with what the opposition are doing.
“Apart from Celeste, we’re sticking with the 13 we have and really looking forward to the series.”
The Ireland Women’s squad is:
Gaby Lewis (captain), Alana Dalzell, Rachel Delaney, Georgina Dempsey, Sarah Forbes, Shauna Kavanagh, Arlene Kelly, Sophie MacMahon, Jane Maguire, Kate McEvoy, Cara Murray, Leah Paul, Mary Waldron.
The ODI series dates are:
• 11 June 2022: Ireland Women v South Africa Women – 1st ODI (Clontarf, 10.45am start)
• 14 June 2022: Ireland Women v South Africa Women – 2nd ODI (Clontarf, 10.45am start)
• 17 June 2022: Ireland Women v South Africa Women – 3rd ODI (Clontarf, 10.45am start)
All matches will be livestreamed and available at www.livestream.com/CricketIrelandLive.
Tickets to the matches are €5 adults, under-16s go free, with online ticket sales at: www.cricketireland.ie/tickets.