Cricket: World Cup lifeline for West
Ireland coach Phil Simmons threw a World Cup lifeline to Regan West yesterday by naming the injured left-arm spinner in his provisional squad of 22 for the showpiece tournament which begins in February.
West, a first-team regular in 2009, has not played a competitive match of any kind for more than a year after undergoing three different operations on his shoulders, but Simmons is desperate to have his best spinners available on the Indian sub-continent.
"Regan is working hard and will undergo a final fitness assessment before the final squad of 15 is announced (on January 19)," Simmons said. "We're still hopeful that he'll make it"
Off-spinner Albert van der Merwe is likely to deputise if West is not fit.
Batsman Ed Joyce has also been included, having been given special dispensation to play for Ireland again less than four years after representing England. He is one of seven players in the squad contracted to English counties.
IRELAND SQUAD: W Porterfield (Warwicks, capt), A Botha (North County), A Cusack (Clontarf), G Dockrell (Somerset), P Eaglestone (Strabane), A Eastwood (Pembroke), J Hall (Waringstown), T Johnston (Railway Union), N Jones (Civil Service North), E Joyce (Sussex), R McCann (Instonians), J Mooney (North County), K O'Brien (Railway Union), N O'Brien (Northants), A Poynter (Clontarf), B Rankin (Warwickshire), P Stirling (Middlesex), A van der Merwe (The Hills), R West (Civil Service North), G Wilson (Surrey), A White (Instonians), C Young (Sussex).