Ireland news April 25, 2009

Simmons extends Ireland deal

Cricinfo staff

Following Ireland's successful World Cup qualifying campaign in South Africa coach Phil Simmons has extended his deal until 2011.

Simmons, 46, took over following the 2007 World Cup and has helped guide Ireland to four trophies in nine months.

"I'm delighted to continue in the post, and am happy to commit myself to Irish cricket to the end of 2011," Simmons said. "I've really enjoyed my time with Ireland, and believe that there are more trophies and further success to come. I'm ambitious and so are the team - we've got a lot of important fixtures coming up, and I'm confident we'll continue to impress on the world stage."

Warren Deutrom, the chief executive, added: "We believe that continuity in our senior coaching ranks is essential to maintain the high professional standards that Ireland has set for the Associate world in the last few months.

"Many felt that our World Cup exploits of two years ago were the summit of our potential, but Phil has managed to raise the bar still further as we have completed the 'Associate treble' in 20-over, four-day and 50-over cricket in the space of nine months.

"With Phil at the helm, we are confident that this team can achieve even greater things on the international stage, and strengthen our argument for ICC to outline a clear road map for strong Associate countries like Ireland to progress to elite status."

There is little time for Ireland's players to rest as they start their Friends Provident Trophy campaign against Worcestershire, at Stormont, on Sunday.