No regrets over England spell: Rankin
Ireland's Boyd Rankin insists he has no regrets over playing for England as he prepares for his country's first Test at Lord's.
The 35-year-old fast-medium paceman will this week stride out at the home of cricket in just Ireland's third Test, and their maiden one on English shores.
Rankin will go up against former international team-mates after he turned his back on Ireland to play for England in 2012.
"I have no regrets," said Rankin on his temporary international switch. "At that stage, there were no real opportunities to play Test cricket for Ireland.
"That has changed now but at that time I wanted to play at the highest level, and representing England was the only way."
The 6ft 7in bowler made just one long-format appearance when featuring in England's heavy fifth-Test defeat to Australia in Sydney more than five years ago.
After he was subsequently overlooked by England's senior and Lions teams, Rankin rejoined his native Ireland.
"It was a tough Tour to start with," recalled Rankin. "I made my debut and it was a blur. I hurt my shoulder days before the Test and wasn't fully fit. I felt I had to give it a go. I didn't know how bad it was until I got home.
"In hindsight, I shouldn't have played, but when you get an opportunity to play Test cricket it is one you want to take."
This four-day meeting against England at Lord's will be a historic occasion for Rankin and his Ireland team-mates.
"It is a dream come true, something I never thought would happen in my playing career," added Rankin.