Netherlands series important in lead up to European Qualifiers: Ed Joyce
Ireland head coach Ed Joyce. © Cricket Ireland
Ireland head coach Ed Joyce has said that the upcoming four-match T20I series against the Netherlands is crucial for them going into the European Qualifiers next month.
Speaking ahead of the first T20I, Joyce said that the series is important for building the confidence of the team. "It's a really important lead-in series to next month's T20 European World Cup Qualifier. It's important we keep winning. The more you win, generally the more wins it leads to, so we want to keep that virtuous circle going,” he said on Monday (July 26).
"The Netherlands may be missing a few players from this squad, but for us, it’s really important we keep working on our combinations. We have a clear plan on how we want to play our game. If we can execute our game plans as we did in the last few matches against Scotland, then I think we not only have a good chance in this series but also against all our opponents in next month’s qualifier and further forward."
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Eimear Richardson and Mary Waldron are back in the Ireland squad after missing the Scotland series earlier in May. Joyce seemed thrilled to have the experienced campaigners back on the team. "It's no secret we have a young squad, so it is great to have the experience that they both bring available."
“Eimear, for example, has already been watching some of the younger players, like Freya Sargent - an up-and-coming off-spinner – and begun to share her experience. Likewise, we don't have huge depth in wicketkeeping resources, so Mary obviously adds greatly to that as well. They are both brilliant people with enormous experience. They have played at World Cups and in a lot of big games. So, a massive bonus for players and coaching staff alike to have them back.”
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Despite the restrictions due to the pandemic, Joyce felt that the team had a busy summer with the Super Series and the series against Scotland. "There is that little bit of mid-season fatigue there, but the squad are really looking forward to this series."
"We have had a big build-up week - we've trained Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday - so we feel prepared. The series will be a big challenge for us, but hopefully, we will get some hot weather to go with the ground at Malahide," he concluded.