Surprise side to play SA and India in series

Ireland, surprise package of the Cricket World Cup in the West Indies, is to host a three match one-day international (ODI) series between South Africa and India, and will also play an ODI against both Test-playing teams.

Ireland, surprise package of the Cricket World Cup in the West Indies, is to host a three match one-day international (ODI) series between South Africa and India, and will also play an ODI against both Test-playing teams.

Cricininfo reports that the Irish Cricket Union has confirmed the dates for India's three-match series against South Africa in Belfast and also two ODIs where Ireland will play both teams. The three-match series will start on June 26 with subsequent matches on June 29 and July 1. Ireland will play India on June 23 and South Africa the following day in their first ODIs since the World Cup.

"The Irish Cricket Union is proud that two such great cricketing nations as India and South Africa are coming to Ireland to play each other and against Ireland," said ICU chief executive Warren Deutrom.

"Following last year's hugely successful match at Stormont between Ireland and England, the ICU is delighted that top-class cricket continues to come to Ireland, in the first ever matches between full Test nations here.

"These matches will not only continue to put Irish cricket on the map after the success of the Ireland team at the World Cup, but should provide a real financial impetus to our objectives for the future of the game." In original discussions it had been suggested that Australia would be India's opposition but those plans fell through. The series will be South Africa's first commitments since the World Cup although some of the players are due to appear in the Afro-Asia cup in early June. - Sapa

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