Clontarf's Robert Forrest and Phoenix's Nic Pretorius were both delighted to receive calls from Munster Coach Ted Williamson selecting them for the T20 match against the Northern Knights.

It's an early birthday present for Forrest, who turns 24 on Thursday, with his new-found maturity and consistency perhaps not surprisingly coinciding with the arrival of John Mooney as new coach, and the benefit of wintering in Australia.

"I got the call from Ted Williamson on Thursday evening having scored a few runs the weekend before in the Irish Senior Cup against Donemana," said Forrest, who followed up with another fifty in the win at Leinster. 

"Having spent the winter playing Down Under in Melbourne, I came home feeling in good form going into the new season.

"The hard work over the winter seems to be paying off with some early season runs and hoping it can translate into the shorter format this Friday against the Knights."

Forrest enjoys strong family ties with the Munster region with both my grandparents on my dad's side being from Midleton in Cork.

"I've always enjoyed playing at The Mardyke, and  it will be a special honour to wear the red of Munster in this years IPT20," added a clearly proud Forrest.

"It will certainly be an interesting experience taking on Leinster Lightning later in the series but a challenge I am very much looking forward to."

For South African born Pretorius, who qualified as a local Irish player at the end of the 2016 season, it's the culmination of a lot of hard work.

"Iíve been working hard on my game over the last few years and at 27 Iím only starting to understand what batting is all about," said Pretorius.

"For me now it's about staying fit and spending time in the middle. I have a pretty clear idea of where Iím going, I just have to stay in the moment and enjoy the game," added the Phoenix captain.

Pretorius is relishing the prospect of pitting his wits at interpro level and can't wait to hook up with his new team mates.

"I put my name in the hat for selection and I was really excited when I got the call from Ted (Williamson). I look forward to playing for the Munster Reds and cannot wait to make some special memories with a new bunch of lads.

"The fact that the interpros are now List A is great for all involved. It's now up to us as players to set the standards."

Pretorius also revealed that he has not only inter-pro ambitions, but Irish senior international hopes too, and these games offer him the perfect shop window to showcase his talents.

"Iíd love to represent Ireland at the highest level, but I know that I will have to perform really well on a consistent basis, and be patient.

"Self-belief and execution is almost like the chicken-egg situation. It doesnít matter which one comes first, however, the one cannot be without the other. Finding that balance will be key.

"Iíll keep working hard and who knows. But for now, I'll just focus on the next ball that comes my way."

Munster Reds' historic debut match against The Knights at The Mardyke starts at 5pm on Friday.