Lawson impressed by Irish
Robin Walsh (Sunday Life)
Ireland’s younger breed will today take on the might of Australia in the ICC Under 19 Cricket World Cup in New Zealand - with more than a little bit of help from one of the grand names of Australian cricket.
The squad spent a week in Sydney under the expert eye of Geoff Lawson who is now Director of Cricket at New South Wales University and who is pictured here with Northern players Lee Nelson. Paul Stirling and James Shannon. And the former prolific swing bowler with 180 Test wickets to his credit gave the Irish players his tick of approval.
Lawson, who’s now 52, said : “Irish Cricket looks in fine shape. The bowlers have all got sound bowling actions and considering they have come straight from snow and indoor schools, all hit their straps straightaway with some solid bowling performances.”
The intensive sessions - made possible by support from sponsors RSA and the Sports Councils on both sides of the border - were part of an intensive build-up geared to the young internationals defeating a frontline Under 19 Test country for the first time. They almost did it against the West Indies, falling by just four runs in a warm-up game, and fought hard in going down by five wickets to South Africa in the World Cup proper. Today’s game against Australia in Queenstown promises to be an even tougher proposition.
Meanwhile the Irish senior side set off for Sri Lanka yesterday for their four-day Intercontinental Cup game against Afghanistan as well as a quadrangular Twenty20 series involving Sri Lanka “A”, Afghanistan and Canada and Ian Callender will be there to report for Sunday Life.
And after Sri Lanka it’s straight to Dubai in early February to play for a place in the Twenty20 World Cup in the West Indies in the spring and Robin Walsh will be in the UAE to chart Ireland’s progress.