Wilson confident of positive Irish showing
GARY Wilson is one of the few batsmen who has yet to make a meaningful contribution in Ireland's three warm-up games in Sri Lanka, ahead of the World Twenty20 which starts next week, but he intends to put that right on Monday when Ireland get their chance of getting one over Bangladesh.
The Tigers were in Belfast two months ago and left with a 3-0 victory in Twenty20 games but Wilson, in the form of his life at that time, has good personal memories with the bat, the only Irish player to score 100 runs in the series.
"That was an unusual series. The first game they came out well on top but the last two could have gone either way and we were winning them.
"But what we can take from them is their natural instinct in the last six overs. The Bangladesh Premier League has helped them, we saw the way they attacked in those final overs," said Wilson who could be on the move from Surrey next season, with at least one other county interested in Ireland's first choice wicket-keeper.
With 52 runs coming off the last four overs to set up the win against Zimbabwe on Thursday, the batsmen seem to be learning fast and another win on Monday would send them into their opening World Twenty20 game against Australia two days later full of confidence.
"Australia may have slipped behind us in the world T20 rankings for a while but let's make no mistake about it, ratings are irrelevant," adds Wilson.
"We are underdogs going into this tournament and Australia still have plenty of stars but we are packed with people who can win games and even have a world class player.
How many times do I have to say that Paul Stirling has the world at his feet. He had a disappointing World Twenty20 last time, when he didn't really get going. He'll be looking to put that right this time."
Stirling is favourite to win the Associate Player of the Year tonight at the annual ICC Awards in Colombo. Three of his Ireland team-mates, George Dockrell, Ed Joyce and Kevin O'Brien are also in the shortlist of five.
Meanwhile Ireland international Greg Thompson will play for Waringstown next season.
Less than a week after the NCU Premier League season ended, the Villagers, who could only finish joint fourth, have confirmed the signature of the Lisburn captain who leaves Wallace Park after 10 years in the senior side.
Although Thompson, who celebrates his 25th birthday on Monday, was selected for Ireland as a 16 year old as a leg spinner, he has now turned to off spin but his batting is also significantly improved. Indeed he scored 64 off 54 balls at The Lawn last month.
His bowling, though, could give Waringstown skipper Kyle McCallan a five-pronged spin attack, if Gary Kidd – who made his international debut in the same match as Thompson - returns from Australia next summer, adding to Lee Nelson, James Hall and McCallan himself.