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Sports


Five-nation pre-T20 World Cup Qualifier warm-up tournament announced

Five-nation pre-T20 World Cup Qualifier warm-up tournament announced

Dubai, Aug 12 (UNI) Ireland, Oman, Nepal, Netherlands, and Hong Kong will contest

a five-nation T20I series in Oman from October 5 to 10 in lead-up to the ICC Men's

T20 World Cup Qualifier 2019.

Each side will play four T20Is before heading to the United Arab Emirates for the

Men's T20 World Cup Qualifier, which begins on October 11. Six teams from the

Qualifier will proceed to the main tournament, which takes place in Australia in

October-November next year.

The Irish squad for the Qualifier will be selected next month and head coach

Graham Ford believes that his side have improved a lot in the T20 format and will

give a tough fight to the other teams in the qualification round.

"I’m very pleased to see this pre-Qualifier warm-up series announced - it’s not

only important for our squad to play competitive T20 cricket before the World Cup

Qualifier, but to do so in similar conditions to the UAE will be a crucial part of our

preparations," he said.

"We have put a lot of work into improving our T20 skills over the last two years

and I think we’re starting to see the benefits of that work. Many of the players have

grown impressively as cricketers and I feel that as a team there are exciting signs

of progress," Ford said.

"While it’s true that we haven’t played as much international T20 cricket as we

would have liked over the past 12 months, what we have at the international and

domestic level has really demonstrated the potential of the squad – we now need

to focus on the task at hand and give ourselves the best shot at world cup

qualification," he added.

Ireland will face Hong Kong in their opening encounter of the five-nation series

on October 7. Hong Kong are being coached by former Irish captain Trent Johnston,

who took up the position last month, adding an extra layer of intrigue to the clash.

All matches will be played at the Al Amerat Cricket Stadium in Muscat, Oman.

Full schedule (all times local)

Oman v Hong Kong, 9.30am, Saturday October 5

Ireland v Netherlands, 2.30pm, Saturday October 5

Oman v Ireland, 9.30am, Sunday October 6

Nepal v Hong Kong, 2.30pm, Sunday October 6

Netherlands v Nepal, 9.30am, Monday October 7

Hong Kong v Ireland, 2.30pm, Monday October 7

Ireland v Nepal, 9.30am, Wednesday October 9

Oman v Netherlands, 2.30pm, Wednesday October 9

Netherlands v Hong Kong, 9.30am, Thursday October 10

Oman v Nepal, 2.30pm, Thursday October 10.

UNI XC-BM

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