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Ireland set to accept a World Cup invite to Bangladesh

By Ian Callender

Ireland are expected to tell ICC they will accept their offer to take part in this month's Under 19 World Cup in Bangladesh as the replacement team for Australia.

The 2010 winners, 2012 hosts and 2014 beaten semi-finalists pulled out because of safety concerns and, as the runners-up in the qualifying tournament, Ireland have been asked to take their place in the 16-team event.

ICC - the sport's governing body - yesterday confirmed the tournament would go ahead, starting on January 27, with their security arrangements "satisfactorily mitigating the risks identified".

The Cricket Ireland Board gave chairman Ross McCollum and chief executive Warren Deutrom permission to take a final decision and they spent yesterday "assessing the logistics and security arrangements for the tournament and liaising with the relevant authorities".

However, with England and Scotland both taking part in the tournament, with the blessing of the British Government, Cricket Ireland are unlikely to deny their youngsters the chance to play on the biggest stage.

This was the second successive World Cup the Under 19 squad have failed to qualify for on the field but although they will be outsiders to win even one match, the experience of taking part in a global tournament will stand the players in good stead as they strive to make it into the senior squad.

Current internationals George Dockrell, Andy McBrine, Tyrone Kane, Graeme McCarter and Peter Chase all played at the 2012 event.

If Ireland do travel they will go into Group D with India, New Zealand and Nepal, the team who beat them to the final spot in the global qualifier in Malaysia in October.

Cricket Australia pulled out of a Test tour to Bangladesh in October because of safety reasons.

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