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McBrine upbeat on Irish future as double beckons



Big games: Andy McBrine

Big games: Andy McBrine

©INPHO/Oisin Keniry

Big games: Andy McBrine

Andy McBrine hopes to get over the disappointment of missing out on Ireland's first Test match with two victories in 24 hours for North West Warriors and Donemana.

Ireland's decision to face Pakistan without a front-line spinner cost McBrine a place in the record books but he knows there is plenty of time on his side.

"Everyone in the squad wanted to play the first Test, they will be in the history books for all time, so I was desperately disappointed, but I know I'll have a chance for many more to come," said the 25-year-old.

"I ended up fielding a lot, because of Gary's (Wilson) injury and it was very enjoyable. I would love to have had a wee bowl but we have a busy summer ahead and there's plenty more cricket to be played."

That starts tonight when he leads the Warriors into their first T20 Trophy game against Northern Knights at Stormont before he is involved in the match of the first round in the Irish Cup tomorrow with Merrion the visitors to The Holm.

"We've played Merrion quite a few times in the Irish Cup, although I think the last time was in 2012 when we lost the semi-final, a game I missed because I was at the U19 World Cup finals," he said.

There will be plenty of familiar names in the Merrion line-up including Tyrone Kane, who was in the exclusive Test XI, although McBrine is not expecting Ed Joyce to be involved tomorrow.

"I'm not sure how much club cricket he will play but it would be a hammer blow (for us) if he turned up, with our 30 to 40-yard boundaries. But they are a very good side and I know a few of them - TK, John Anderson, Max Neville and their Indian professional bowled at us in the nets at Malahide. But hopefully home advantage swings it in our favour."

Donemana have lost their first two league games but welcome back Andy Riddles after serving his six-game suspension.

"We have missed Andy's durability in the middle order so hopefully he can get us back on track," added McBrine.

Pick of the action in the NCU should be North County's visit to Premier League runners-up CIYMS while Brigade face a difficult trip to Clontarf.

First round fixtures (12.30): Armagh v Balbriggan, Carrickfergus v Coleraine, CIYMS v North County, Bready v Civil Service North, Donemana v Merrion, Eglinton v Leinster, Fox Lodge v North Down, Clontarf v Brigade, Cork County v Strabane, Malahide v Muckamore, Phoenix v Ardmore, YMCA v Cork Harlequins

Belfast Telegraph