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Ireland to play Pakistan in first test next year
13 October 2017, 08:54 | Sandy Nunez
Ireland were inducted as full time ICC member which granted them Test playing status
While Ireland has only been admitted to test status this year, cricket has existed in the country since the 18th century and the national team, like its rugby union counterpart, represents both Northern Ireland and the Republic.
The ODI league will be a direct qualification pathway towards the ICC Cricket World Cup and will be contested by the 12 Full Members plus the winners of the current ICC World Cricket League Championship.
"We would like to thank the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) most sincerely for agreeing to be our first opponent in Test cricket", Deutrom added.
The first ODI league, featuring the game's top 13 limited-overs nations, will commence in 2020-21, running for two years leading into the 2023 World Cup, before converting to a three-year league in each cycle beyond that.
A genuine Test match world championship and an ODI league will be introduced to worldwide cricket after both were given in-principle agreement by the ICC Board on the final day of the governing body's meeting in Auckland. A set of playing conditions for four-day Tests is set to be drawn up by ICC management in coming weeks.
Ireland will play their first ever Test match against Pakistan on home soil next May, the country's cricket chiefs announced on Thursday. "It has been our wish to make our Test debut in front of our own fans within 12 months of becoming a Test nation, and against a big team, so I'm delighted".
Pakistan are now seventh in the Test rankings but were top of the pile as recently as a year ago. In that case, Ireland can out their plan in place, having played a major chunk of cricket in the four-day format. "If it was a rain-off yesterday, it would have been very disappointing so I am a fan of that".
Besides, with Misbahul Haq's calming presence gone, Pakistan might look to take up the mantle of most unpredictable team once more, something equally foreboding as it is exciting.
"There's a special affinity between ourselves and Pakistan going back to the 2007 World Cup and they've been regular tourists here over the past decade".
Purists view Test cricket as the pinnacle of the sport but it has struggled, particularly in Asia, as lucrative T20 competitions such as the Indian Premier League have caught the public's imagination.
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