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Ireland ready to take place on Test stage

By Ian Callender

Cricket Ireland chairman Ross McCollum insists Ireland will be ready to take their place on the Test stage whenever they get the call.

The board of the sport's governing body has given the provisional go-ahead for Ireland to become the 11th Test nation and a decision will be taken at the International Cricket Council's AGM, at Lord's in June.

Initially, Ireland will play Tests against Zimbabwe and Afghanistan but the chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board has already verbally promised Ireland a Lord's Test, against England in 2019.

"All the proposals have still to go before the board in April and then the AGM in June but I'm hopeful that everything is moving forward the way we want and, although there is no guarantee, my glass is more full than this time last week," said former Ulster inter-provincial batsman and Ireland international McCollum.

"If it was to happen we have to be ready to hit the ground running. Our plans are in place."

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