William Porterfield (capt)

I’ve played with “Purdy” since we were 11. He was best man at my wedding and is my closest mate. For the team he is so important, he is our leader.

He sets the example for everything we do. He was widely regarded as one of the most innovative captains at the 2011 version by commentators and media and we’ll need him to be just as influential this time around.

You don’t want to be behind him doing pre-tournament interviews -takes a while for them to understand him.

Gun fielder.

Andrew Balbirnie

Some might say Balbo has timed his run of great form to absolute perfection. So much so that this winter he has been our best batsman.

Plays spin as well and as aggresively as anyone in the squad and a useful option with ball as well. I think he has benefited hugely from being at Middlesex and as soon as he got that confidence that he was an important player for our team he became such a useful addition.

Only man in the squad with a bigger head (in actual, not metaphorical terms) than me, which is a bonus.

Alex Cusack

We often make the joke that Kieran, our physio has to hold Cusey together with sticky tape. Cusey deserves huge credit for getting himself into condition for the competition.

His action puts so much pressure on his body and to see the pain he puts himself through, it’s an impressive effort!

He is our “go to man” to bowl in the power play and has got nerves of steel. He is definitely a man for the big occasion. The quiet man of the team while at the same time a sharp tongue on him!

Peter Chase

Not much seems to bother the big man. He is potentially the something different that we have been searching for since we lost Boyd to England two years ago.

When his action clicks he has got genuine pace and bounce and it was no coincidence that on the recent tour down under he seemed to enjoy those conditions.

I roomed with him ion that tour…. Terrible snorer.

George Dockrell

Another man that seems to always perform well in the big games. As a left arm spinner he offers us variety in our attack. It seems as though he has been around forever now having made his debut as a fresh faced 17 year old back in 2010.

He is one of our senior players now, which at the age of 22 seems strange to say!

One of the strangest eating techniques you are ever likely to see. As I have told him on many occasions.

Ed Joyce

Simply put, Our best player. consistently, since Joycey returned from his stint with England he has been that rock in our order at number 3.

Speaking to him over the last few months and weeks I know how keen he is to have a big tournament with the bat.

Hugely passionate about trying to take Irish Cricket as far as it can possibly go. My tip to have a great tournament. Literally gets away with murder!

John Mooney

Everyone knows how passionate Johnboy is about playing cricket for Ireland. He balances our team so well. To have John coming in at number 8 in the batting line up gives the rest of the team so much confidence.

The type of character you would want in the trenches with you. A veteran now of three world cups and his experience will also be vital. Gun fielder.

One of the driest senses of humour known to man, a very funny guy. No surprise, the leader of our team song.

Liverpool fan but we won’t hold that against him

Andrew McBrine

“Scra” as he is known to everyone, epitomised what it means to be an Irish cricketer on the acclimitisation tour before Christmas. Always willing to help anyone that needed it.

A very clever bowler and should push George all the way if its decided that we are only to play one spinner. Also an excellent fielder.

If you thought Purdy was hard to understand. Wait till you hear this guy.

Kevin O’Brien

Without doubt the most well known Irish Cricketer… Genuinely famous in India for that innings back in 2011 but he is much more than that for us.

He is our x-factor in the middle order. A guy that can take the game away from the opposition no matter who that might be!

His medium pacers will also be key for us come the middle of February. A shrewd operator with the ball who knows exactly what he is trying to do.

Niall O’Brien

Like Kev and John before him this will be Nobby’s 3rd World Cup. Without his innings in 2007 against Pakistan, Irish Cricket may not be where it is today.

Had a great season last year with Leicester and has continued that form through the winter so far with Ireland. Has the ability bat in the middle and will also cover an opening spot. Again experience will be key.

He is a natural born competitor with real will to win. Him and Kev often talk about the “stump cricket” they played as lads growing up. I wouldn’t have wanted to be umpiring that….

Max Sorensen

Widely regarded by many as very unlucky to miss out on the original 15. Tim Murtagh’s incredible misfortune has given Maxy a reprieve and I know he will be mad keen to take it.

Maxy is a serious athlete and has much to offer with both bat and ball. He came into the side 3 years ago and has been present almost ever since.

Has said some of the funniest things ever to come out of a man’s mouth. These are known in our team, simply as “Maxisms"

Paul Stirling

Literally half the man he used to be. A serious effort from Stirlo to get himself in to great shape for the tournament.

Got the ability to take the best attacks in the world to pieces. He will be genuinely feared by most teams we play.

Another who gives the impression he wants to have a massive World Cup. If he sets a platform for us any score can be got.

His off spin will be vital for us in the field as well. Excellent Slip fielder.

Can tell blindfolded whether coke has come from a bottle, glass bottle or can. No joke, i’ve seen it, it’s impressive.

Stuart Thompson

Thommo is a supremely talented left handed batter. Was unfortunate before Christmas in that in the absence of Ed, he was asked to bat at three and wasn’t able to score the volume he would have liked.

That shows you however how highly he is rated by the captain and coach. I have no doubt that in years to come he will be better for that challenge.

Thommo could be a genuine all rounder for Ireland for many years to come. Also a gun fielder. Found on a saturday afternoon, checking his accumulator (I would know, I’m beside him) to see if it has come in. It never does.

Craig Young

Youngy is a man who has benefitted greatly from the contract system now in place. He is thriving as a professional cricketer and has a real thirst for more knowledge. I can only see him improving from now on and he has already had a pretty impressive start to his international career.

Quite possibly the easiest man in the world to wind up.

Gary Wilson- I couldn’t write my own so I asked Paul Stirling to fill in!

“Wils” is the backbone to our batting order, being able adapt to all situations, whether we lose a couple of early ones or if we need to accurate the run rate.

With the safest hands in the team you can depend on him to take anything that comes his way. We’ll need him to be the captain’s eyes behind the stumps and keep energy levels high.

Here’s hoping he has learned how DRS works since the last WC.

Would forget his head if it wasn’t screwed on.

So to the Backroom staff (better be careful what I say here)

Phil Simmons

Simmo came to us at such an important time for Irish Cricket. Taking over from the foundations laid by Adi Birell. He has had to build his own team a couple of times and has overseen the most successful period in the history of Irish Cricket. It obvious now to see what the team and Country mean to him.

Roy Torrens

What is there left to say about the big man. The self proclaimed Sir Alex of cricket managers after our treble of trophies in 2013. Roy has been the heartbeat of Irish Cricket for the best part of 45 years. This is his swan song and we’d love to send him off with a memory fitting to his service

Pete Johnston

Pete is our assistant coach and analyst. He basically does two people’s jobs. he works incredibly hard and is another that has been around for years with Irish Cricket in his heart. Only man to rival myself in terms of forgetfulness. I would say he is worse. Marginally.

Brendan Connor

You won’t meet a man more passionate about his job. Always striving to make himself and the team better. More than just our S&C;… A sounding board to many. Serious man crush on William Porterfield.

Kieran O’Reilly

Similar to Brendonahe is more than just our physio. He is often seen in the nets or on the outfield, helping out whatever way he can. The two lads are key to our group. Terrible touch rugby referee. Just terrible.

Matthew Mott

Motty joined us as batting coach for our tour in October and fitted in straight away. A typically straight talking Aussie, he is ruthless when feeding the lads in the nets. Backs himself on the golf course

Carl Hopkinson

Up until October I had only known Hoppo as a Sussex player/coach. Sussex always used to beat Surrey so I tainted him with that brush! Similar to Motty he fitted in very well when he joined and he will certainly add value to us as a fielding unit

Michael Caulfield

A genuinely good guy who could talk the hind legs off a donkey. He adds a calmness and re-assurance to the group. Very good mates with AP McCoy so here’s hoping for a few good Cheltenham tips!

Barry Chambers

Baz has been our media man now for big tournaments for a long time and he’s great at taking the heat away from us. Again, a Liverpool fan but not everyone can be perfect.

So that is the 24 man panel that will be representing Ireland next month.

No man more important than the next. Everyone pulling in the same direction. Come the 16th of Feb we will have had great preparation and we will be ready.