Ireland have named a squad of 15 for the inaugural Under 19 Women's T20 World Cup which takes place next month in South Africa.
Instonians’ and Malahide’s Amy Hunter will lead the side, one of two senior internationals in the squad, alongside Georgina Dempsey.
As expected, Leinster players supply the bulk of the squad with ten players from the egion, but there are five northern based players too - three from the North West and two from the NCU.
Ireland have been drawn in the same group as West Indies, New Zealand and Indonesia.
They will also play official warm-up matches against Pakistan and Namibia, while there will also be non-official matches against UAE and Zimbabwe as part of a preparation camp.
“Firstly, I would like to extend a massive congratulations to all the players selected for the Irish squad at the first-ever Women’s U19 T20 World Cup<" said Head Coach Glenn Querl.
"It is a great opportunity for all involved and a chance to create lifelong memories. I still fondly remember my experience at an Under-19s World Cup many years ago. I am very proud to be leading this team of very dedicated, talented and hardworking players.
“Tournaments like these give the players a real taste of what it could be like to be a professional cricket player. Equally, it’ll provide an insight into the intensity, game-pressure and exhilaration of what the players could expect to meet in the main ICC Women’s T20 World Cup down the line.
“The squad travelled to Spain at the end of October for practice games and spent some quality time fine-tuning their skills. The group is made up of some very exciting all-rounders who offer quality with both bat and ball.
"There is also very promising spin and seam options. We also have the experience of Amy Hunter and Georgina Dempsey who both have full international caps to balance the inexperience of the younger players. Ten out of the 15-player squad will be available for the following World Cup cycle which is very exciting place to be as a squad.”
IRELAND U19 SQUAD
Amy Hunter - captain (Instonians/Malahide), Siúin Wood – vice captain (YMCA), Zara Craig (Eglinton), Georgina Dempsey (YMCA), Rebecca Gough (The Hills), Abbi Harrison (Waringstown), Jennifer Jackson (Eglinton), Joanna Loughran (Leinster), Niamh MacNulty (Merrion), Aimee Maguire (The Hills), Kia McCartney (Coleraine), Ellie McGee (Rush), Julie McNally (Clontarf), Freya Sargent (Clontarf), Annabel Squires (Merrion)
Non-travelling reserves: Aoife Fisher (CSNI), Alice Walsh (Clontarf)
Glenn Querl (Head Coach), Aideen McGuinness (Team Manager), Jay Shelat (Performance Analyst), Julia Webster (Physiotherapist), Robyn Lewis (Assistant Coach), Alison Cowan (Team Doctor)
The 16-team tournament will be held between 7 January and 24 January 2023 The 16 teams are divided into groups of four as below:
Group A: Australia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and USA
Group B: England, Pakistan, Rwanda and Zimbabwe
Group C: Indonesia, Ireland, New Zealand and West Indies
Group D: India, Scotland, South Africa and the UAE
Ireland Under-19 Women’s fixtures
Ireland will play two official warm-up matches:
9 January: Ireland Under-19s v Pakistan Under-19s (Tuks Oval, Pretoria)
11 January: Ireland Under-19s v Namibia Under-19s (Hammanskraal Cricket Club, Gauteng)
Ireland Under-19s Group Stage fixtures are:
15 January: Ireland Under-19s v West Indies Under-19s (North West University Oval, Potchefstroom)
17 January: Ireland Under-19s v New Zealand Under-19s (JB Marks Oval, Potchefstroom)
19 January: Ireland Under-19s v Indonesia Under-19s (JB Marks Oval, Potchefstroom)
The squad will depart on 1 January for a preparation camp at the University of Pretoria (during this week they will play unofficial warm-up fixtures against Zimbabwe and the UAE).