Saturday 18 November 2017

Cricket: Dockrell faces different examination

George Dockrell. Photo: Getty Images
George Dockrell. Photo: Getty Images

Teenage left-arm spinner George Dockrell has been omitted from Ireland's 13-man squad for this month's one-day international against Australia because he will be taking school exams.

Dockrell and all-rounder Nigel Jones were the only two players left out of the Ireland squad that were knocked out in the group stage of the ICC World Twenty20 last month.

The 17-year-old Dockrell has impressed in his short international career taking 12 wickets in seven Twenty20 internationals before making his ODI debut against West Indies last month.

"It's a pity that George can't make the game, but he has exams which are obviously important to his future," said Ireland coach Phil Simmons.

"He'd been bowling really well and settled in superbly to international cricket. That has helped us offset the retirement of Kyle McCallan, and the injuries to Regan West."

Ireland were able to select wicketkeeper Niall O'Brien after he confirmed his availability earlier this week despite a fractured left index finger.

The 28-year-old has had a cortisone injection to ensure he can take his place.

Ireland will play Australia in a one-day international for just the second time when they meet at Clontarf in Dublin on June 17.

Their only previous meeting was at the 2007 World Cup when Australia won easily by nine wickets en route to lifting their third successive world title.

Ireland captain William Porterfield is looking forward to the challenge.

"It's the one game that all the players have been talking about since the fixture was announced last year," he said.

"You can't help but be motivated by the chance to play the world champions, especially in front of the home supporters.

"It'll be a great experience playing against players of the calibre of Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke, Mike Hussey and Mitchell Johnson. We'll certainly not be overawed though."

Ireland's 13-man squad: William Porterfield (capt), Trent Johnston, Andre Botha, Peter Connell, Alex Cusack, Gary Kidd, John Mooney, Kevin O'Brien, Niall O'Brien, Boyd Rankin, Paul Stirling, Andrew White, Gary Wilson.

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