MORE than 500 international caps have arrived in Pretoria ahead of Ireland Wolves two-match 50-over series against Namibia, the back-to-back games today and tomorrow (starting at 8am GMT).
Gary Wilson and George Dockrell have played 514 senior games between them and join the squad along with James McCollum (11 caps), James Cameron-Dow (5) and the uncapped Jack Tector.
However, with Wilson replacing Lorcan Tucker behind the stumps and Dockrell covering for Jacob Mulder, who impressed in the 4-1 T20 series victory, they could be playing for their places in the ODI squad which travels to Zimbabwe in April.
Dockrell hasn’t taken a wicket in his last five ODIs (despite bowling 36 overs) and Wilson, who has played 105 ODIs, averaged 19 with the bat in his six games last year.
The “fresh horses” will be most welcome because two of the squad have gastroenteritis, another has a chest infection and Neil Rock is flying home with a wrist injury. Selection will be made this morning.
Instonians all-rounder Shane Getkate, in his first year as a centrally contracted player, is one of four who played all five T20 games and was the only one to bowl in every match but will play if required.
“I’m delighted to be back in South Africa, it’s a place close to my heart (he was born in Durban). I was in Cape Town for three weeks before this series, training with a local club and doing a bit of gym work.
“Being centrally-contracted allows you to train day-in, day-out with a group of top quality coaches around you.”
"I'm happy to big in the senior squad as it’s another big year for Irish cricket, starting with the T20s against Afghanistan next month. If I get the opportunity to play, I’ll be giving it 100 per cent.”
Ireland squad: H Tector (capt), J Cameron-Dow, C Campher, G Delany, G Dockrell, S Doheny, S Getkate, T Kane, J Little, J McCollum, N Rock, J Tector, G Wilson, C Young.