Paul Stirling appointed as Ireland vice-captain
“I first mentioned the idea to him in the Caribbean and he said he’d love to do it. He’s someone that I’ve always sought advice from when thinking about my batting, so to have him as my right-hand man over the next few years is really exciting and one I’m sure he’s excited for as well,” Ireland skipper Andrew Balbirnie said.Updated: Jun 19, 2020, 19:19 IST
Opening batsman Paul Stirling was appointed the vice-captain of the Ireland men’s cricket team. The 29-year-old made his international debut for Ireland in 2008 and has appeared 282 times for the national side, the fourth-highest number of caps for Ireland.
The right-handed batsman has amassed 8,821 runs across all formats and is the second-highest run-scorer of all-time for Ireland.
The all-rounder has taken 101 wickets. In 2019, Stirling stood in as acting Ireland captain for six T20 Internationals.
“I first mentioned the idea to him in the Caribbean and he said he’d love to do it. He’s someone that I’ve always sought advice from when thinking about my batting, so to have him as my right-hand man over the next few years is really exciting and one I’m sure he’s excited for as well,” Ireland skipper Andrew Balbirnie said.
“I think within the Irish squad we have a lot of experienced guys to be able to voice their opinion, but at the end of the day, it is my decision. To have different points of view is great and refreshing, but with someone like Paul he is someone I’d talk to a lot about the game - it’s exciting for the next phase of the squad we’re bringing through,” he added.
Stirling is looking forward to helping his skipper and lead the team towards success in the near future.
“It was fitting to get a call from Bal [Andrew Balbirnie] to ask me to be his vice-captain. We’ve played together all the way up from when we were kids so I look forward to helping him shape the way this Irish side moves forward in the coming months and years ahead,” Stirling said.
“He’s had an excellent start to his captaincy with wins in the Caribbean and the sub-continent, but there is so much on your plate as captain - especially with a younger team than we’ve had in the past - so I am happy just to be a sounding board to bounce ideas off and help implement any changes in the way Bal wants to take this team forward on and off the field,” he added.
The Ireland men’s team returned to training last week with discussions still underway over the possibility of the team playing three one-day internationals against England at the end of July. If the matches proceed, it will be Ireland’s first fixtures as part of the new ICC World Cup Super League, essentially world cup qualifiers for the 2023 Cricket World Cup.