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Andrew Balbirnie released by Ireland to join Glamorgan on short-term deal

Ireland captain will replace Marnus Labuschagne for the first six weeks of the county season.

Balbirnie in action for Glamorgan in last year's T20 Blast.
Balbirnie in action for Glamorgan in last year's T20 Blast.
Image: Chris Fairweather/Huw Evans Agency

IRELAND CRICKET CAPTAIN Andrew Balbirnie has returned to Glamorgan on a short-term deal ahead of the start of the English county season.

Balbirnie, who lined out for the Welsh side in last year’s T20 Blast campaign, will replace Australia’s Marnus Labuschagne as Glamorgan’s designated overseas player for the first six weeks of the season.

He will return to Ireland ahead of the inter-provincial series in May and Ireland’s three-match ODI series against the Netherlands in June.

“It’s a brilliant opportunity to play red-ball cricket, and the County Championship is historically one of the best first-class competitions in the world,” Balbirnie said.

“I really enjoyed my time in Wales last season in the Vitality Blast – the players and coaches were incredibly welcoming and it’s a great place to play.

“I’m really excited to go back, get stuck in and hopefully contribute to some wins for Glamorgan.”

Cricket Ireland’s high performance director Richard Holdsworth said: “A window of opportunity arose with the postponement of the men’s tour to Zimbabwe, and we were happy to agree to Andrew’s move for six weeks to Glamorgan.

“We have a big year ahead of us at both international and domestic levels, with a T20 World Cup in late 2021, so for one of our key players to be able to take advantage of an opportunity to play cricket in April at this standard will be of great benefit.”

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Niall Kelly

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