James Norman Knight Shannon
February 12, 1990, Belfast
Right hand bat
Right arm offbreak
Middle order batter
A player on the fringes of the Ireland set-up for a considerable time, middle-order batsman James Shannon earned a place in the country's first Test squad against Pakistan in May 2018 having previously played a combined three internationals - one ODI and two T20Is - in three years between 2013 and 2016.
Coming through the Ireland age-group system, representing them at all levels from Under-13s to Under-19s, he was a major contributor to the Under-19 side's path to the 2010 U-19 World Cup in New Zealand. Shannon finished with 266 runs at an average of 38 during the team's championship run at the global qualifier in Toronto, where he finished third on the team in scoring - behind only Paul Stirling and Andy Balbirnie. His time at the junior World Cup in New Zealand, however, was far less successful, where he scored only three runs in three matches before being dropped.
After developing through Instonians CC in the Belfast area club scene, he failed to secure a contract with Worcestershire following several trial opportunities in their second XI. His appearances for Cardiff MCCU also failed to attract any suitors from the English county scene before Shannon headed back to his native Belfast after graduation to represent Northern Knights in Ireland's Interprovincial domestic competition.
He parlayed some decent performances against South Africa A in the summer of 2012 for more opportunities in 2013, when his ODI debut came against Pakistan. He made his Intercontinental Cup debut later that summer against the Netherlands before being picked in Ireland's squad for the World T20 Qualifier in the UAE at the end of the year where he made nine runs in three appearances, which included a win over Afghanistan in the tournament final.
Since the end of 2013, opportunities have been sparse for Shannon with his only subsequent T20I appearance coming against Hong Kong at the end of the 2016 home summer. He has kept knocking at the door anyway with Northern Knights in the InterPro competition and has been picked in multiple squads for the Ireland Wolves against A sides from New Zealand and Bangladesh. He was included in Ireland's squad for the 2018 World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe, but he never took the field. His status as the favoured option to fill the reserve batsman role, however, was reinforced when he was included in the 14-man Test squad for Ireland's inaugural men's Test against Pakistan.
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