Hot on the heels of Nigel Jones stepping down from the Ireland team, Albert van der Merwe yesterday followed him into retirement.
Van der Merwe played only 21 internationals, after his debut in 2010, but was a first choice in the four-day Intercontinental Cup, taking five wickets in an innings four times, including 11 in Ireland’s victory over Kenya last February.
It leaves National Coach Phil Simmons searching for a second specialist spinner (to George Dockrell) for Ireland’s next I-Cup game against the UAE in March.
Meanwhile, another Ireland international has moved from Strabane to The Lawn as Waringstown announce their intention to regain the NCU Premier League title.
Opening bowler Phil Eaglestone, who has won 16 caps, joins Greg Thompson and professional Obus Pienaar in a formidable squad, captained by Kyle McCallan.
Eaglestone said he hopes the move will increase his chances of regaining his place in the Ireland team.