CRICKET IRELAND have been handed a major boost by the announcement today that Tourism Ireland will be the team sponsor for the ICC World Cup which gets under way in Australia and New Zealand next month.

With the Tourism Ireland logo prominent on the squad's new playing shirts, fans watching Down Under and a global TV audience of billions will be reminded of the attractions that await back home as the Boys in Green play away.

The deal was confirmed today at the Trinity College Pavilion in Dublin by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Mr Paschal Donohoe TD, who also helped unveil the new O'Neill's manufactured Cricket Ireland playing shirt and training gear.

Ireland will play a minimum of six World Cup matches which will be broadcast live to a global audience of 2.5 billion in 220 countries during the six-week long event. The Boys in Green face the West Indies, the UAE, South Africa, Zimbabwe, India and Pakistan during the group stages of the biggest tournament in cricket.

The deal presents Tourism Ireland with unique opportunity to leverage the popularity of the Ireland cricket team during the Cricket World Cup around the world – to support tourism growth from Australia and New Zealand, as well as other key cricket-loving countries, including England, India and South Africa.

Tourism Ireland intends to leverage the huge, positive media exposure of the tournament – with its logo prominently displayed on the team’s playing shirt and training kit; the logo will also feature prominently on the website and social media platforms of Cricket Ireland.

Video footage of the island of Ireland, including interviews with some of the players describing their favourite place to holiday – will be shared by Tourism Ireland on its website,, and with its Facebook fans and Twitter followers.

"We are very proud that Tourism Ireland will be supporting our efforts at the World Cup as our team sponsor," said Cricket Ireland CEO Warren Deutrom.

"As a standard-bearer for Ireland on the world stage, it is entirely fitting that our World Cup squad will be sponsored by the organisation responsible for promoting our island abroad.

"Cricket is Ireland's fastest-growing sport and has enormous prominence in a number of key overseas tourism, education and commercial markets for Ireland. Therefore, we are confident that we can deliver for Ireland plc during one of the world's great sporting events."

Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, commenting on the deal said: “We are delighted to be associated with the Ireland cricket team and such a high profile tournament. Our sponsorship of the team in this year’s Cricket World Cup offers us a unique opportunity to highlight the island of Ireland to a huge global audience.

"It’s wonderful for us to be involved in a sport that has such a wide appeal in many of our important tourism markets – and we look forward to connecting and communicating with a wide audience of cricket fans across the world.”

This will be Ireland's third consecutive World Cup, having recorded famous wins over Pakistan, Bangladesh and England in previous events. The win over England saw Kevin O'Brien score the fastest World Cup century (50 balls) and Ireland successfully chase the highest total - 327.

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Paschal Donohoe TD, said: “I warmly welcome Tourism Ireland’s sponsorship of the Ireland cricket team in the ICC Cricket World Cup. It is a great opportunity to highlight Ireland’s tourism offering to a global audience, in a variety of both established and developing overseas tourism markets. “The sponsorship agreement is timely, as it follows the recent launch of the British-Irish Visa Scheme, under which visitors from many new and developing overseas tourism markets will be able to travel freely around Ireland and the United Kingdom on a single visa. India, where cricket is enormously popular, is one of the countries to which this new scheme is being rolled out. I look forward to this sponsorship agreement providing increased awareness of Ireland as a tourism destination around the world”.

Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Michael Ring TD, said: “The Ireland team has grown enormously in stature as a force in world cricket in recent years. This sponsorship agreement is an opportunity for Ireland to benefit from this increased profile, with the logo beamed into homes across the world, creating awareness about Ireland which will translate into decisions to travel in the future.

“I wish the Ireland cricket team every success at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 and look forward to seeing visitors coming to see first-hand our rich and varied tourism offering in the future.”

Ireland depart for Australia on January 30th for a training camp at the Randwick Petersham club, where in addition to playing to the Sydney based outfit, will also play warm-up games against Scotland and Bangladesh, before facing the West Indies in the tournament opener in New Zealand on February 16th.