NORTHERN Knights can call on 11 internationals when they defend their T20 Trophy title in this year’s inter-provincial series, which gets under way at Bready next Thursday.
All four squads were confirmed on Friday with all 22 players who were at the Ireland training camp in England involved plus David Delany who missed the 18-day stay in the Ageas Bowl bubble because of injury.
Delany, the 22-year-old Clontarf paceman, is named once again in the Knights squad, such is the strength of Leinster Lightning bowling attack and, indeed, exactly half of the Ireland 22 are in the Lightning 13-man panel, including new cap Curtis Campher who is playing for YMCA this season.
Rory Anders who took four wickets in an impressive spell in the first North-South Development game at Lisburn on Thursday and Malahide batsman Matt Ford, son of Ireland head coach Graham, are the two non-internationals.
Five of the Knights squad were in Southampton but skipper Gary Wilson will also have Jacob Mulder, Graeme McCarter, James Cameron-Dow and Greg Thompson at his disposal plus contracted Shane Getkate, who has played 15 T20 internationals but was not selected in the Ireland 22 last month.
There is also one NCU player in the Munster Reds squad this year, Civil Service North opening bowler Matty Foster, who was named in the provisional 16-man Knights squad but did not make the final cut, along with Josh Manley, CJ van der Walt and Marc Ellison although the latter comes in for the 50-over Cup series which immediately follows the T20 matches.
North West Warriors have named the same 13 for both formats with Andy McBrine continuing as captain and the one new face is Nathan McGuire, another of the promising Leinster teenagers who cannot find a place in the Lightning squad.
Boyd Rankin who was ruled out of the three-match series against England with a back problem is included although he has yet to make his debut for Lisburn. One member who will almost certainly miss next week’s opener against the Knights is Bready’s Conor Olphert who is reportedly out for a fortnight with a torn quad muscle.
Neil Rock, who will play for the Reds in the T20 competition, returns to Knights duty for the 50-over games with Thompson and Ross Adair dropping out.
Despite Andrew Balbirnie having taken over the Ireland captaincy he will be back in the ranks for the inter-provincials with Lightning retaining George Dockrell as captain in both formats.
All four sides go into action next Thursday with Lightning hosting the Reds at Pembroke while the Knights first home game will be at Comber, against Lightning on Tuesday August 25.
Northern Knights T20: G Wilson (capt), P Stirling, J McCollum, H Tector, S Getkate, R Pretorius, M Adair, J Mulder, G McCarter, D Delany, R Adair, G Thompson, J Cameron-Dow
50 over: as above except M Ellison, N Rock for R Adair, Thompson
North West Warriors T20 and 50 over: A McBrine (capt), W Porterfield, R Allen, N McGuire, R Hunter, S Thompson, W Smale, G Kennedy, G Hume, C Young, B Rankin, C Olphert, D Rankin.
Leinster Lightning T20: G Dockrell (capt), G Delany, M Ford, A Balbirnie, L Tucker, K O’Brien, C Campher, S Singh, T Kane, B McCarthy, J Little, P Chase, R Anders.
50 over: S Doheny, J Tector for Ford, Anders
Munster Reds: J Tector (capt), M Brewster, JJ Garth, N Rock, T Tector, M Foster, D Carey, A Cawley, S Jones, S Doheny, R Jones, J Lawlor, J MacNulty.
Meanwhile, the Ireland Under-17 intra-squad series finished all square when the Blues, captained by Lisburn’s Matthew Humphreys enjoyed a comfortable eight wickets victory over Tim Tector’s Greens.
Following Tector’s dismissal for 16, to the fourth ball of Matthew Daly’s only over – the Waringstown pace bowler also dismissed Tector with his first ball on Wednesday – the Greens collapsed from 72-3 in the 12th over to 82 all out.
An opening partnership of 44 between Ardmore's Conor King and Luke Whelan proved a winning platform and with James Rose in the middle, the Blues won with almost seven overs to spare to level the four-match series 2-2.
Scores: Greens 82 (R Curry 24; S Kennedy 2-3, J Rose 2-19) Blues 83-2 (13.2 overs, C King 38, L Whelan 20). Blues won by 8 wickets.