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Boyd Rankin to return to the Ireland shirt after 11 appearances for England

“There’s a real opportunity for Ireland to get Test status now, and that prospect was a real lure for me.”

IRELAND WILL HAVE Boyd Rankin available for their upcoming ICC InterContinental Cup clash with Papua New Guinea in Australia, as well as the ICC World Twenty20 in India in March.

Irish Cricket have today confirmed that Rankin will return to play for Ireland, having made 11 appearances for England in 2013 and ’14 — including an Ashes Test match against Australia.

The Tyrone native’s last appearance for England came on 17 January 2014, which means he’ll be eligible under current ICC regulations to play for Ireland again on 18 January, 2016.

“I’m delighted to be returning to Irish cricket, where I was born and learned the game,” said the 31-year-old bowler. “I’ll always be grateful to England for the chance to play Test cricket, but with little opportunities in the last two years, I felt it was time to move on at this stage of my career.

“There’s a real opportunity for Ireland to get Test status now, and that prospect was a real lure for me — I’d love to be part of history. Before that, of course, there’s a T20 World Cup in India — I’ve played in three before with Ireland and it’d be great to make it four.

“I’ve also very happy memories of both the 2007 and 2011 50-over World Cups in the West Indies and India, and I’d like to make it a hat-trick of appearances in 2019 in England.”

Rankin made the last of his 82 appearances for Ireland during the 2012 ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka, before making the switch to England. He took 112 wickets at an average of 24.12, being Ireland’s leading wicket-taker in the 2007 World Cup.

Boyd Rankin 3/9/2013 Source: Rowland White/Presseye

“It’s fantastic news for Irish cricket to have a bowler of [Boyd Rankin's] undoubted quality back in the fold,” Cricket Ireland Performance Director Richard Holdsworth said.

“We’ve had a number of retirements in recent times, losing quality and proven performers such as Trent Johnston and John Mooney. That has severely depleted our quick bowling stocks so to have Boyd returning gives everyone a tremendous boost.

“His height and the extra bounce he generates makes him such a difficult proposition for opponents, and it gives skipper William Porterfield a fantastic extra option in his armoury.”

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Paul Dollery

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