Belfast Telegraph

Cricket: Eastwood handed chance to earn an Irish recall

By Ian Callender

National coach Phil Simmons has rung the changes for Ireland A’s second game of the season — and their first against a county 2nd XI.

Only six players plus 12th man Lee Nelson have survived from the one-day game against MCC which was abandoned after less than four overs as Simmons goes for experience for the three-day game with Kent at Maidstone, starting on Tuesday week.

Instonians’ James Shannon remains as captain but there is no place for the other two batsmen who were dismissed at Lord’s, Ben Ackland and Strabane’s Niall McDonnell, Peter Connell, who has yet to appear in the CIYMS team this season and the two Ireland under-19 internationals Ben Wylie and Barry McCarthy.

They have been replaced by full internationals, Andrew Poynter, Allan Eastwood and Max Sorensen plus CI’s new signing Chris Dougherty although Coleraine slow left armer Scott Campbell comes in for his Under-19 World Cup team-mate Wylie.

For Eastwood, who played three Intercontinental Cup matches in 2010, taking nine wickets, it is a way back into the international team while Poynter and Sorensen, who both played in the final stages of the World Twenty20 Qualifying tournament, seem sure to be involved in Ireland’s busy summer of cricket which includes an Intercontinental Cup game against Afghanistan and two four-day games against South Africa A.

There are four games for the A-team against county opposition.

Meanwhile, the Australia squad for their five-match one-day series in England — which starts with an ODI against Ireland at Stormont — has been named.

Missing from the squad which has just completed a tour of the West Indies is Mitchell Starc, Dan Christian and Nathan Lyon, replaced by Mitchell Johnson, 19-year-old pace man Pat Cummins and leg spinner Steve Smith.

All the familiar names are there, however, with Michael Clark leading a squad which also includes the Hussey brothers Michael and David, Shane Watson, David Warner and Brett Lee.

Ireland A squad: J Shannon (capt), J Anderson, S Campbell, C Dougherty, A Eastwood, T Fisher, R McCann, G McCarter, L Nelson, A Poynter, M Sorensen, S Thompson.

Australia squad: M Clarke (capt), S Watson, G Bailey, P Cummins, X Doherty, B Hilfenhaus, D Hussey, M Hussey, M Johnson, B Lee, C McKay, J Pattinson, S Smith, M Wade, D Warner.

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