Ireland June 18, 2012

Why Ireland deserve Test status

Martin Jones
In the longer form of the game, Ireland have been consistently bagging solid results, despite the fact that they often have to do without their stronger players who are on county duty
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This is a question that has been floating around for several years: should Ireland be given Test status? There are no guaranteed parameters for Test status. South Africa's first Tests were not assigned as such until many years after they were played. Bangladesh gained Test status after only three ODI wins - two against sides that did not play Test cricket. The fact that they had lost 27 matches against Test nations before the last of those three wins did not matter, and nor apparently did the fact that they lost their next 45 completed matches until a solitary win by eight runs against Zimbabwe, 18 years on from their inaugural appearance.

Ireland have played 33 completed ODIs against Test-quality opposition so far, won five of them and tied one. At the same stage in their development, Zimbabwe had won two and tied one, so Ireland have outperformed the two most recently promoted teams.

In the last three years they have been defeated just three times in ODIs by their fellow Associates and Affiliates, and are well ahead of the chasing pack. In the longer form of the game, Ireland have been consistently bagging solid results, despite the fact that they often have to do without their stronger players who are on county duty. Clearly, the quality of the cricketers being produced by the emerald isle is not a problem.

The next argument against Ireland's elevation is lack of suitable stadia. Ireland currently host their home matches at Stormont in Belfast and Clontarf in Dublin. Both stadia boast a capacity of over 5,000 spectators for internationals, but the jewel in the crown is currently under construction in Malahide. The new stadium, fondly named 'The Village', is planned to have a capacity of over 10,000 and will be ready to host England as soon as September next year. Once The Village has been completed, Ireland will be able to spread their fixtures between three top quality venues.

Finally, and most significantly, Ireland has no domestic first-class structure in place. This is both easily remedied and easily overlooked. Ireland's chief executive, Warren Deutrom has outlined a plan to establish a provincial first-class structure, although the plans are currently embryonic. A quicker plan to implement might be to establish three Irish teams, and to invite the Dutch and Scottish A teams to bolster numbers. Ireland would then be able to implement a five-team domestic structure along the lines of the one in Zimbabwe. It should also be noted that Bangladesh received their Test status before their first-class competition was properly established. Only in the season following their first Test match, did the National Cricket League become a first-class competition.

All of these plans could be implemented as soon as next year, with the completion of the Malahide stadium. If the Irish team gets the dozen ODIs they want to play against Full Members, then they can build up to Test status, which could be granted in 2013 or 2014, and would reward the hard work and firm organisation shown by Cricket Ireland since they burst onto the scene in 2007.

And if they take time to find their feet, stick with them. Every team in history has struggled with the step up to Test cricket.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Pankaj on June 26, 2012, 6:00 GMT

    ICC looks at revenue potentials n not spreading the game or something. Bangladesh for all thats worth it, generates revenue with packed stadiums and had the backing of sub-continent neighbors and a powerhouse BCCI. Who's gonna vouch for the Irish? Sad cos clearly without a FC structure, they still are better than Bangladesh or Zim even for that matter.

  • Mick Jones on June 25, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    Interesting comments. As a CI fan I'm delighted to see the majority of comments are in favour of the 'step-up' for Ireland. Some of us have been saying for a while that Ireland should 'warm-up' the test sides visiting Eng. Personally I favour Tom's idea of a 'candidate' or maybe 'junior' 'provisional' status - whatever name would be most acceptable to the ICC :) This would reward the fantastic progress that's already been made, but also give Ireland and the rest of the world a chance to see whether our lads could really cut it at that level. We are in no doubt about that, a chance to prove it is all we ask.

  • kiran on June 25, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    Ireland is a good team.They should get a chance to play test and regular ODI's...I think Ireland can still upset some good test playing countries on their day...Before giving them test status they should given a chance to play more frequent odi's

  • Mick on June 25, 2012, 14:47 GMT

    I agree that Ireland should be granted test status, but as Praveen Pillay mentioned, the ICC need introduce a 2 tier system to address the current imbalance we see in test cricket. Australia, England, South Africa, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka should be entered into division 1. New Zealand, West Indies, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Ireland & Afghanistan should enter division 2. In this format each nation would play a home & away series against the other 5 nations in their division over a 3 year period. This would then culminate in the bottom performed division 1 team playing against the best performed division 2 team in a promotion/relegation one off test for a place in the top tier for the next 3 year cycle. Something like this would surely add more excitement to the longer format of the game, which judging by worldwide crowd attendances, has been in decline for a number of years now.

  • ashish on June 25, 2012, 8:51 GMT

    yes why not...if bangladesh can then anybody else can as well....ireland in the recent times have come so close to winning even against formidable opponents and are one of the better teams in the associate nations...if icc wants to make cricket popular then it has to promote one or two associate nations now and in the present lot there's no better team than ireland for that.

  • Anonymous on June 25, 2012, 5:20 GMT

    and 10 years from now, every one will blame the ICC for giving them test status ... tests are struggling for survival, adding another team will only make the survival even more difficult ... with no first class structure in place now, i do not see how they can get test status in 2 years ... ICC blundered by giving BD test status and hope they do not make the same mistake .... ICC needs to take time out in the calendar to arrange unofficial tests between associates and test nations ... and if the ICC feels that wud be a useless/non profitable exercise, then i see no reason in adding test members ... until the test nations play some 5 day proper test matches against ireland and others, we will not be able to judge them ....

  • realthog in USA on June 24, 2012, 22:56 GMT

    Hear, hear! Ireland's promotion is long overdue.

  • Arthur on June 24, 2012, 18:34 GMT

    Good reasons , but we know the world we live in is unfair and cruel so Ireland will have to wait. Its baffling give bangladesh test status while Ireland dont.

  • Asiacricket1234 on June 24, 2012, 18:01 GMT

    I believe Ireland should have test status but winning one or two ODI or T20 will not going to help them to achieve the Status. I think Ireland should play a 4day match against a test playing nation and if they can do well in that match it will give them a good platform. For example If Ireland arrange a test match against India on a fast bouncy pitch in England or Ireland they will defenately win that 4day match. To be honest if they bowl first on apitch like that considering India's test team quality outside India I think Ireland will be able to beat them even in 3days and it'll give them a great platform :D

  • Tom on June 24, 2012, 16:21 GMT

    I'm in favour of Ireland getting Test status, but I don't think they're quite ready yet. We don't want another Bangladesh. Although Ireland have become a decent ODI team, Tests are a different kettle of fish. I'd like to see Ireland given "Test Candidate" status and a limited tour programme built in so that an Ireland XI is getting regular first class games against: perhaps by including some FC games in Ireland on any tours of England, and an Irish XI touring abroad during their season to play local teams and maybe an A-side. Work on a basis of, say, ten years, with the option to accelerate if they perform above expectations. That way, by the time Ireland do achieve Test status they will be a credible team capable of winning matches. It's also a way to build support and interest before they start playing the really big venues and having to draw a reasonable crowd (which will encourage other nations to host them).

  • Pankaj on June 26, 2012, 6:00 GMT

    ICC looks at revenue potentials n not spreading the game or something. Bangladesh for all thats worth it, generates revenue with packed stadiums and had the backing of sub-continent neighbors and a powerhouse BCCI. Who's gonna vouch for the Irish? Sad cos clearly without a FC structure, they still are better than Bangladesh or Zim even for that matter.

  • Mick Jones on June 25, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    Interesting comments. As a CI fan I'm delighted to see the majority of comments are in favour of the 'step-up' for Ireland. Some of us have been saying for a while that Ireland should 'warm-up' the test sides visiting Eng. Personally I favour Tom's idea of a 'candidate' or maybe 'junior' 'provisional' status - whatever name would be most acceptable to the ICC :) This would reward the fantastic progress that's already been made, but also give Ireland and the rest of the world a chance to see whether our lads could really cut it at that level. We are in no doubt about that, a chance to prove it is all we ask.

  • kiran on June 25, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    Ireland is a good team.They should get a chance to play test and regular ODI's...I think Ireland can still upset some good test playing countries on their day...Before giving them test status they should given a chance to play more frequent odi's

  • Mick on June 25, 2012, 14:47 GMT

    I agree that Ireland should be granted test status, but as Praveen Pillay mentioned, the ICC need introduce a 2 tier system to address the current imbalance we see in test cricket. Australia, England, South Africa, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka should be entered into division 1. New Zealand, West Indies, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Ireland & Afghanistan should enter division 2. In this format each nation would play a home & away series against the other 5 nations in their division over a 3 year period. This would then culminate in the bottom performed division 1 team playing against the best performed division 2 team in a promotion/relegation one off test for a place in the top tier for the next 3 year cycle. Something like this would surely add more excitement to the longer format of the game, which judging by worldwide crowd attendances, has been in decline for a number of years now.

  • ashish on June 25, 2012, 8:51 GMT

    yes why not...if bangladesh can then anybody else can as well....ireland in the recent times have come so close to winning even against formidable opponents and are one of the better teams in the associate nations...if icc wants to make cricket popular then it has to promote one or two associate nations now and in the present lot there's no better team than ireland for that.

  • Anonymous on June 25, 2012, 5:20 GMT

    and 10 years from now, every one will blame the ICC for giving them test status ... tests are struggling for survival, adding another team will only make the survival even more difficult ... with no first class structure in place now, i do not see how they can get test status in 2 years ... ICC blundered by giving BD test status and hope they do not make the same mistake .... ICC needs to take time out in the calendar to arrange unofficial tests between associates and test nations ... and if the ICC feels that wud be a useless/non profitable exercise, then i see no reason in adding test members ... until the test nations play some 5 day proper test matches against ireland and others, we will not be able to judge them ....

  • realthog in USA on June 24, 2012, 22:56 GMT

    Hear, hear! Ireland's promotion is long overdue.

  • Arthur on June 24, 2012, 18:34 GMT

    Good reasons , but we know the world we live in is unfair and cruel so Ireland will have to wait. Its baffling give bangladesh test status while Ireland dont.

  • Asiacricket1234 on June 24, 2012, 18:01 GMT

    I believe Ireland should have test status but winning one or two ODI or T20 will not going to help them to achieve the Status. I think Ireland should play a 4day match against a test playing nation and if they can do well in that match it will give them a good platform. For example If Ireland arrange a test match against India on a fast bouncy pitch in England or Ireland they will defenately win that 4day match. To be honest if they bowl first on apitch like that considering India's test team quality outside India I think Ireland will be able to beat them even in 3days and it'll give them a great platform :D

  • Tom on June 24, 2012, 16:21 GMT

    I'm in favour of Ireland getting Test status, but I don't think they're quite ready yet. We don't want another Bangladesh. Although Ireland have become a decent ODI team, Tests are a different kettle of fish. I'd like to see Ireland given "Test Candidate" status and a limited tour programme built in so that an Ireland XI is getting regular first class games against: perhaps by including some FC games in Ireland on any tours of England, and an Irish XI touring abroad during their season to play local teams and maybe an A-side. Work on a basis of, say, ten years, with the option to accelerate if they perform above expectations. That way, by the time Ireland do achieve Test status they will be a credible team capable of winning matches. It's also a way to build support and interest before they start playing the really big venues and having to draw a reasonable crowd (which will encourage other nations to host them).

  • frank durant on June 24, 2012, 15:14 GMT

    Yes I think that Ireland should be given the chance to play test cricket.I also hope that would keep players from migrating to England,and allow them to build a strong team.

  • Damien Wilson on June 24, 2012, 11:55 GMT

    Couldn't agree more! One of the missing features in matches involving the expansion countries is that there is virtually no chance of them winning a test match against a higher-ranked country. A country like Ireland, which has shown the determination required to develop cricket as a national sport, should have the chance to play test cricket against other teams of a similar skill level. The intention being that the confidence gained in achieving a few victories would be invaluable for further development. Bring it on!

  • Tomek Holland on June 24, 2012, 10:26 GMT

    I believe it is a poor reflection on the ICC that this is not being talked about confidently. And I wonder if Ireland had 10 or 50 times the population the path would be infinitely easier. Personally I don't see how Ireland would fund the side, as I'm sure getting cricket dollars in Ireland wouldn't be easy. But then cricket should not be about coin. I'm confident on a competitive level Ireland would go well against NZ, Banga, Zim, the Windies. If a nation WANTS to play Test cricket, and it wouldn't be just a ridiculous exercise, then they should be invited to do so. I thought Test cricket was the pinnacle? You have a team begging for it. They will be minnows but so what? National soccer teams don't have to beg to compete at the top level. Give them a go already. End of story.

  • CRAIG McDERMATE on June 24, 2012, 10:19 GMT

    There are many clubs growing up in Dublin & other cities and fan support for the IRISH CRICKET TEAM is increasing. I think IRELAND should take part in a full-county season and prove that they are worthy of playing test.

  • BILAL on June 24, 2012, 8:34 GMT

    WHAT ABOUT KENYA. THEY MADE TO WORLD CUP SEMI FINAL IN 2003

  • Mr Smith on June 24, 2012, 8:20 GMT

    Yes why not im sure all the Indians would love to have them in to boost they stats which they crave.Test cricket still is the pinnacle and Ireland still need to climb some more.

  • YASIR HUSSAIN on June 24, 2012, 7:31 GMT

    I think its too early for them.First they should play some tough cricket as test cricket is not a easy format.No doubt they are one of the best emerging side but still they need time to get test status..they should arrange test matches with the domestic teams of all top test playing nations.This will give them huge experience...

  • Mihir Mangaonkar on June 24, 2012, 6:52 GMT

    Well i always said Ireland should have been Full Member by 2011 WC after winning 3 Intercontinental cups in Row. They made it 2nd Round of 2 ICC events (2007 WC,2009 WT20). Please people who says we dont' want next Bangladesh or Zimbabwe to Ireland..then let Ireland play Bottom 4 Teams on regular basis for 2years then let them play against From 4-6 ..then after 5years let them play against big teams...likes of Australia,South Africa. Directly don't schedule test against Australia or SOuth Africa..it will always be cake walk for Australia/South Africa. Still PAkistan,India,Sri Lanka don't find it easy playing in those conditions and finish in 3-4days then how can New Team play there comfortable to be a match for them. So Make Ireland Full Member and let them play against Bangladesh,Zimbabwe,West Indies, If possible New Zealand or Pakistan.

  • ramesh parajuli on June 24, 2012, 5:27 GMT

    i have agreed with the view that Ireland should get chance to play against test playing countries and be given the status of test playing countries but it should not be forgotten that many countries along with Ireland have been emerging as a good cricket playing countries. Example Nepal and Afghanistan, if Ireland is allocated for the quota of ICC test playing nations, Nepal and Afghanistan should get chance from Asian quota. Last but not the least there are as many good cricketing sides all around the globe, and they are not to be forgotten.

  • Sheheryar Khan on June 24, 2012, 4:12 GMT

    I think they deserve a shot at top flight Cricket. The reluctance probably comes from the fact that Bangladesh were promoted when they were not ready and it became a bit embarassing for the ICC. But that is obviously unfair to the Irish. Wish them good luck. They are an exciting bunch and would be a valuable addition to the test fraternity.

  • Praveen Pillay on June 24, 2012, 3:40 GMT

    Yes why not, but the question is will ICC be able to manage them with already packed-up FTP and with adamant of 20/20 it seems highly improbable that anything on this line will happen, but as we know how ICC works, so it might happen and if it did it would be just a casual decision to grant them test status (which we all know could happen). But, as we know, the best possible option for Ireland and everybody in general is to have a 2-tier test system that way it will give the well-deserved Irish the chance to play against the big boys at the highest level and plus it could be the ideal window for ICC to clean up the international cricket mess that has been created by there more than just a causal approach.

  • Nathan on June 24, 2012, 3:31 GMT

    Ireland should not receive test status. There's no point them even playing odis when their players are eligible to play for England. . .

  • d_tech_will on June 24, 2012, 0:05 GMT

    they should be given test status i say. we see the same teams play each other over and over again. ireland have shown huge heart before in the shorter format of the game. They should now be tested at 'test' level. makes no sense in arguing why zimbabwe still have status. its not like they win many matches anyway. so, ireland's inclucion in this light should not be hampered by their losses.

  • kryon on June 23, 2012, 20:06 GMT

    Ireland should get Test Status once they make themselves a separate entity out of UK.Without a decent first class structure in place and proper infrastructure Ireland will struggle just like Bangladesh.Although unlike Irish players Bangladesh players did not get the chance to play outside their domestic structure in neighboring countries.Another thing that needs to be stopped is the defection of Irish players to England.

  • Wade on June 23, 2012, 18:38 GMT

    Ireland should have 3 first-class teams: Dublin; Belfast; and Country Districts, playing in Derry and Cork. The 1st class compettiton could be combined with Scotland (Glasgow, Aberdeen, and Edinburgh) and/or with teams from the Netherlands (Rotterdam, Amsterdam, The Hague) on the Magners League principle.

  • Jordan Reynolds on June 23, 2012, 18:17 GMT

    Excellently written. The first two paragraphs really outline the fact that test match status is deserved for Ireland

  • Raj Bhadra on June 23, 2012, 17:37 GMT

    I think Ireland should given test cricket rights bcoz they deserve it.

  • Sundar on June 23, 2012, 15:25 GMT

    Sorry, poor arguments. I just have one reason why they should not be given test status as yet. That they are simply not good enough. We have already made one mistake by giving test status to Bangladesh. They do not deserve it. Lets not repeat the same mistake. Ireland do not deserve test status. Period.

  • kaushiq on June 23, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    I dont think Ireland is ready for a test status. ODI performance and test capability is different. even though i support Ireland getting a test status. they have very promising players with vast potential, if they are given a chance to play i think they will improve as a test side quicker than zimbabwe and bangladesh. Ireland, you have my vote (even though its useless. hope to see you in test arena soon.

  • Akash bhardwaj on June 23, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    Ireland fully deserve to play Test cricket, please give me the answer! why ireland not played test matches why why!. one thing i say that to ICC plz!!!!!!!! don't waste time. plz!!!!!! help to devlop Ireland Cricket.

  • danoz on June 23, 2012, 14:21 GMT

    a way to fast track irish cricket to international standard is to include them into the english domestic comp.rather than set up a second rate poor standard domestic comp in ireland they should be included in the english domestic where thier is money and sponsership and tv to help the game grow.

    the same principle applies to scotland and the netherlands

    give ireland 3 teams cork,dublin and belfast into the english domestic comp an example would be dublin vs hampshire and so on.

    i have a problem with scotland playing in world cups(its like queensland playing in a world cup,ireland are different its a sovereign nation like new zealand) scotland should supply players for england like glanmorgan(wales) does.

    i would give scotland 2 teams glasgow and endinburgh for example glasgow vs kent.

    i would also give holland 2 teams amsterdam and rotterdam for example rotterdam vs essex.hopefully it can get on dutch and irish tv

    when countrys tour england they can play holland and ireland

  • greg on June 23, 2012, 13:09 GMT

    what this article overlooks is that admitting ireland into the ranks of test nations will upset India's balance of power at the ICC (surely the main reason bangladesh got promoted?) i.e the voting block of india, pakistan sri lanka and bangladesh will not have as close to direct control they have now, something that all the results in the world wont change...

  • PDTM on June 23, 2012, 12:29 GMT

    I would love to see Ireland playing Test cricket, but I think the next generation of players will be the ones to do it. They currently have good players, but they tend to be quite inconsistent. I am looking probably 10 years down the track, and will boldly assert that George Dockrell will be their first captain, if England don't get their hands on him.

  • Samuel on June 23, 2012, 11:29 GMT

    Lessons HAVE to be learned from Bangladesh - the step up to Test cricket is virtually impossible without a first-class competition at home. Ireland are in a better position because so many of their players play in county cricket, but I still think they have to get a first class competition going at home (more so England don't nick their players as much as anything!) before they can even think about joining Test cricket.

  • thealldayfeast on June 23, 2012, 11:05 GMT

    Really good points made here. I think the ECB could do more to help the Irish out, making their cricket summer dovetail with the Irish one. The early season tourers (WI this year, NZ the next) could go on to Ireland to play a couple of Tests and get a good workout against a side desperate to prove themselves. Instead of a pointless ODI series against Australia, a triangular tournament between England, Ireland and one of the two teams that tour England every summer could be a way of giving the Irish a leg up. Ireland have shown consistently they can compete and regular exposure is the only way to improve. After all, England owe the Irish a hand thanks to all the players we've been poaching (ok, quite unsuccessfully - but still) for the last 5-10 years.

  • JT on June 23, 2012, 11:05 GMT

    Fantastic stuff - good luck to them. They will be much worthier opponents than half the dross playing test cricket at the moment.

  • atul on June 23, 2012, 10:45 GMT

    way way better case than Bangladesh any day

    Test cricket will be so much better with them

    And tell Ryan ten Doeschate to move to one of the major test playing nations, else his career int going anywhere

  • ken on June 23, 2012, 9:54 GMT

    structure of domestic cricket in Ireland is shocking and very poor. There is no funding for the game, no fan following at all I mean at all. People of Ireland dislike this game as it is british. Weather is the worse you can have for the game as it rains all over the year. hard to find cricket playing people hard to motivate youngsters to play the game. why would u then advocate for ireland to given test status. do not forget half their team is non irish therefore, forget it!!! rather spend and invest other emerging countries like canada, afghan, etc - never ireland

  • Abir on June 23, 2012, 9:37 GMT

    Everyone will agree that Bangladesh was not ready to play test matches back in 2000. But it is also true that test status and tour programs along with it delivered the money which was needed to develop a world class structure. And now after 12 years Bangladesh has a good squad and facility to compete with the top teams. Ireland should not make the same mistakes. They should develop a good domestic structure before they start playing test cricket and in the mean time ICC should make sure that they play with the top teams regularly and young ones develop interest in cricket.

  • ambalal on June 23, 2012, 9:36 GMT

    Bangladesh is a much bigger country than Ireland.More over majority of BD population is passionate about ccricket.With so many cricketers they can have 3 day first class matches of for about 7 months every year year.

    This is no so in Ireland.Quality wise Ireland is definitely better than Bangladesh in ODI and T-20.Ireland should be given permanent T-20 and ODI status. Doubt if Ireland can even raise 5 first class teams to play first class cricket for even 2 months every year.What will Ireland do with its Test status as it can not raise any first class cricket structure.

    Bangladesh got test status for quantity not quality. Ireland does not have any of the two.We already have too many one sided Test results because of Bangladesh and Zimbawe.I doubt if Ireland like Bangladesh can pull any crowd for test matchoutside their own country.No wonder BD has still not been invited by Austrailia more than a decade after getting test status.Let Irish remain a happy bunch for T-20 and ODI.

  • Ankur Chaturvedi on June 23, 2012, 9:15 GMT

    A nice article.... truly well written... however, 2013 would be too soon. An d just to avoid the kind of embarrassment Bangladesh was as a test nation Ireland shouldn't be asked to travel to play test matches. they should go to sub continent and Australia to play in their first class fixtures to gain more experience.

  • Vivek Dhayalan on June 23, 2012, 8:56 GMT

    Comparing ireland and zim is ridiculous.Zim is better than bang and ireland.I feel ireland will struggle like bang or may be better coz they are more organised.

  • Rob on June 23, 2012, 8:43 GMT

    Bangladesh, like the rest of the subcontinent are cricket mad. Most Irish hate cricket and all it stands for - "toff sport played by the hated Poms".

    Why give another minnow Test status? Zimbabwe have lost theirs, Bangladesh have won how many Tests?

    One of these days someone will explain to me why it is considered so necessary for sports to expand. Its not like corporations expanding where aqds will just sell whatever rubbish they want to sell, you have to change the ingrained culture of a whole generation of kids - witness the continuing failure to try to get any NSWelsh person to take more than a passing interest in AFL or, conversely a Victorian interested in Rugby League.

  • youngkeepersdad on June 23, 2012, 8:12 GMT

    Agree whole-heartedly. I've been saying for a long time that the way to ensure a quality 1st class competition for Ireland is to muck in with the Scots and Dutch and any other European nation that might improve enough to compete in the near future. United, they could hold their own somewhat against the English county competition. Divided, they would still be in danger of being a satellite-feeder for the ECB. One only has to look at what the Welsh get out of (or, more saliently, don't get out of) their association with the ECB and the current effects of Ireland's player loss to England to see how important both Test status for the Irish and a strong non-English first-class structure within Europe truly are. On another note, I hope the ODI tonight Aussie time is not a wash-out. Ireland is a team well worth watching and the Australian team would do well to not under-estimate them in any way.

  • Shakhawat Hossain on June 23, 2012, 8:05 GMT

    Test Status obviously can be the dream of Ireland and they should have the passion and this passion the result of their advancement in cricket. No doubt they are playing well last couple of years. But they have to ensure their infrastructure, popularity of cricket. They have to prove that cricket match arrangement would be profitable for ICC. If we see the Bangladesh, there you can see their advancement in cricket, cricket fan and popularity, infrastructure etc. Finally I want to say Irish should keep under observation and ICC should give them time to improve them.

  • Craig on June 23, 2012, 7:44 GMT

    Hear Here! By all means lets give Ireland Test status. The more Test playing nations the better.

    In fact, there is no reason why all Cricket playing countries couldn't be given Test status and a simply division system be put in place to ensure the games are even.

    No need to have Australia playing China in a Test match just yet but, there is no point in having everyone just playing ODI's and T20 beside the top 9.

  • sachin on June 23, 2012, 7:28 GMT

    I Am From India And I Breathe Cricket.I BELIEVE Ireland Is Million Times Better Team Than bangladesh And Ireland Must Be Given Test Status As Soon As Possible.

  • M.Awais Misri on June 23, 2012, 6:54 GMT

    ireland must have a test status bcz thy have proved their abilities thy have vry good record against the Quality teams n who can forget the chase of 327 against England in WC 2011....they alwys play good cricket atleast beter then Bangldesh and Zimbabvy....plz ICC give them test status so thay can improve more to their skils...

  • Jake on June 23, 2012, 6:31 GMT

    Here here, I agree 100%. No logical arguement can be made to stop Ireland from getting test status, they use a second string side to compete well in the Intercontintal Cup and in the ODI's only experience occasional hiccups much like the larger 'top 10' teams do. They've beaten both Bangladesh and Zimbabwe in ODI matches along with their tie against Zimbabwe, with more matches, more money and more support they would easily move themselves into the top 8. Hopefully the ICC look into this and elevate Ireland quickly or atleast give them full member status with a 2-3 year plan of things they must have in place in order to qualify for test status.

  • Shoaib on June 23, 2012, 5:58 GMT

    Every emerging team should gain test status, Ireland in particular and Afghanistan in general, though Afghanistan has lot to prove. Ireland should be given test status, and they deserve this.

  • Aussie Cam on June 23, 2012, 5:44 GMT

    Couldn't agree more, great comments! No reason why Ireland shouldn't be a test playing nation when you see the quality of Zimbabwe and Bangladesh at times - and how can you improve if not given the opportunity? Can only be good for the game as a whole.

  • Terry Jones of Australia on June 23, 2012, 5:38 GMT

    I agree that Ireland are ready to play international test cricket, which is shown by the fact that their players are being potched by other test playing nations including number one test team in the world, England. Morgan should be granted special return provision and be allowed to commence playing test cricket for Ireland. Ireland could even offer him the captancy as a reward. However, I believe that test cricket should be reward for being the best teams in the longer form of the game and not for being politically in bed with the right cricket countries. Zimb and Bang should be demoted to Temp full members and be included in the ICup of 2011-13 (with two extra rounds played and catch up matches assigned to Zimb and Bang). The winner of 2011-13 ICup should be temp full members until after 2017 test world cup. The runner-up of 2011-13 ICup should be temp full member until mid-2015. Next ICup should be 2014-15 all with non-permanent full members involved. Winner temp full until mid-2019.

  • Andrew Henshaw on June 23, 2012, 5:17 GMT

    Hi Martin, A well written article. I was planning to write a similiar article to yours. Also consider when Sri Lanka & Zimbabwe first began playing test cricket - they played one off tests. Either they deserve test status by 2014 or permanent ODI/T20 status and inclusion in the FTP.

  • Shajadul on June 23, 2012, 5:05 GMT

    I love to see more quality teams in test arena...Ireland is no doubt developing but with the help under England. They need to have their own first class structure. They need to have 4 day matches besides one day and T20s to develop. No need to hurry.

  • Drew on June 23, 2012, 3:26 GMT

    I think Ireland deserve Test status - they have, as you've rightly pointed out, done more than Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. Not to mention that they already have produced a couple of top class International players (albeit these have been scalped by England, purely because Ireland doesn't have Test status).

    I'd love to see England extend a hand to them and host a yearly series against them, similar to the series Australia play against New Zealand every year. Play 3 T20I, 5 ODIs and 2 5-Day First Class games (until Ireland get Test status). They could play the first series in England (giving Ireland time to get more stadia ready, etc.) and then alternate hosting duties.

    Another thing I'd love to see would be for countries touring England to make a stop off in Ireland, either as "warm-up" games, or after their series against England. Even 1 T20I, 3 ODI and 1 FC game would be great for Irish cricket.

  • cric-legend on June 22, 2012, 23:24 GMT

    reason they will not get test status is because no body cares. i dnt think half of ireland even knows they have a cricket team

  • Anonymous on June 22, 2012, 18:19 GMT

    very nice article.....i was saying the same thing after ireland basically jus walked to the finals & won it for the World Cup qualifiers earlier this year.....they are def stronger thn any other associate team & with the way WI & NZ are playing they wud be strong contenders against many test teams too!!

  • Chris Forster on June 22, 2012, 16:09 GMT

    I couldn't agree more. Ireland have deserved test status for the last couple of years. Please make it happen!

  • yougander reddy on June 22, 2012, 15:26 GMT

    thanks for the article !! was waiting from many days why are ireland soo underhyped inspite of putting alots of good results !! im an bigg fan of ireland and there are many like me here.the way ireland fielders field and the way they fight till the end makes them a delight to watch .not many hyped players in the team but they can give any team a run for their money.

    in world cup 2011they beat england and gave south africa a tough tym and have played wayy bettr thn other associates.

    once all the best irish players play for ireland like eoin morgan,dockrell,joyce etc .,they will be a team to reckon otherwise all the irish players will be poached out by england

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  • yougander reddy on June 22, 2012, 15:26 GMT

    thanks for the article !! was waiting from many days why are ireland soo underhyped inspite of putting alots of good results !! im an bigg fan of ireland and there are many like me here.the way ireland fielders field and the way they fight till the end makes them a delight to watch .not many hyped players in the team but they can give any team a run for their money.

    in world cup 2011they beat england and gave south africa a tough tym and have played wayy bettr thn other associates.

    once all the best irish players play for ireland like eoin morgan,dockrell,joyce etc .,they will be a team to reckon otherwise all the irish players will be poached out by england

  • Chris Forster on June 22, 2012, 16:09 GMT

    I couldn't agree more. Ireland have deserved test status for the last couple of years. Please make it happen!

  • Anonymous on June 22, 2012, 18:19 GMT

    very nice article.....i was saying the same thing after ireland basically jus walked to the finals & won it for the World Cup qualifiers earlier this year.....they are def stronger thn any other associate team & with the way WI & NZ are playing they wud be strong contenders against many test teams too!!

  • cric-legend on June 22, 2012, 23:24 GMT

    reason they will not get test status is because no body cares. i dnt think half of ireland even knows they have a cricket team

  • Drew on June 23, 2012, 3:26 GMT

    I think Ireland deserve Test status - they have, as you've rightly pointed out, done more than Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. Not to mention that they already have produced a couple of top class International players (albeit these have been scalped by England, purely because Ireland doesn't have Test status).

    I'd love to see England extend a hand to them and host a yearly series against them, similar to the series Australia play against New Zealand every year. Play 3 T20I, 5 ODIs and 2 5-Day First Class games (until Ireland get Test status). They could play the first series in England (giving Ireland time to get more stadia ready, etc.) and then alternate hosting duties.

    Another thing I'd love to see would be for countries touring England to make a stop off in Ireland, either as "warm-up" games, or after their series against England. Even 1 T20I, 3 ODI and 1 FC game would be great for Irish cricket.

  • Shajadul on June 23, 2012, 5:05 GMT

    I love to see more quality teams in test arena...Ireland is no doubt developing but with the help under England. They need to have their own first class structure. They need to have 4 day matches besides one day and T20s to develop. No need to hurry.

  • Andrew Henshaw on June 23, 2012, 5:17 GMT

    Hi Martin, A well written article. I was planning to write a similiar article to yours. Also consider when Sri Lanka & Zimbabwe first began playing test cricket - they played one off tests. Either they deserve test status by 2014 or permanent ODI/T20 status and inclusion in the FTP.

  • Terry Jones of Australia on June 23, 2012, 5:38 GMT

    I agree that Ireland are ready to play international test cricket, which is shown by the fact that their players are being potched by other test playing nations including number one test team in the world, England. Morgan should be granted special return provision and be allowed to commence playing test cricket for Ireland. Ireland could even offer him the captancy as a reward. However, I believe that test cricket should be reward for being the best teams in the longer form of the game and not for being politically in bed with the right cricket countries. Zimb and Bang should be demoted to Temp full members and be included in the ICup of 2011-13 (with two extra rounds played and catch up matches assigned to Zimb and Bang). The winner of 2011-13 ICup should be temp full members until after 2017 test world cup. The runner-up of 2011-13 ICup should be temp full member until mid-2015. Next ICup should be 2014-15 all with non-permanent full members involved. Winner temp full until mid-2019.

  • Aussie Cam on June 23, 2012, 5:44 GMT

    Couldn't agree more, great comments! No reason why Ireland shouldn't be a test playing nation when you see the quality of Zimbabwe and Bangladesh at times - and how can you improve if not given the opportunity? Can only be good for the game as a whole.

  • Shoaib on June 23, 2012, 5:58 GMT

    Every emerging team should gain test status, Ireland in particular and Afghanistan in general, though Afghanistan has lot to prove. Ireland should be given test status, and they deserve this.