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May 14, 2013
Ireland squad to play Pakistan
Ireland have named an unchanged 14-man squad to take on Pakistan in two ODIs at the end of the month. John Mooney is included, despite being unavailable for the first match after being suspended over a tweet about the death of Baroness Thatcher.
William Porterfield will lead the side, who beat UAE in both their World Cup qualifiers in March, and Ireland's coach, Phil Simmons, is eyeing an upset against Pakistan, who are touring in preparation for the Champions Trophy in England.
"We've always got a chance in our conditions," Simmons said. "We've turned in some strong performances in recent years especially against England and Australia and lost matches we should have won. We're getting stronger all the time and we'll be well prepared and try to put them under pressure from the start.
"There's a great atmosphere at Clontarf with the Irish fans behind us, and with a full house expected for both games, I'm hoping they can get us over the line against Pakistan. It's certain to be a great carnival of cricket over the two days. We know how important it is to keep the momentum going with Irish cricket and we'll be looking for headline victories in our marquee games this year."
Both ODIs, which will take place on May 23 and 26, are close to being sold out. Ireland have been keen to play more cricket against Full Members and Simmons said his players were looking forward to another opportunity to cause a surprise against the nation they memorably beat at the 2007 World Cup.
"There's no doubt we're going to be up against it in both games, but that's what we want," Simmons said. "We're crying out for this type of challenge and it's fantastic that we've got these two ODI's against one of the games superpowers."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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