Cricket Ireland's training facility boost
Cricket Ireland has unveiled its first dedicated outdoor training facility, a vital piece of infrastructure as the game continues to grow at local level and make waves internationally, writes Ger Siggins.
Cricket Ireland CEO Warren Deutrom hailed the move as "a huge step forward for Irish cricket."
The Cricket Ireland Performance Centre has got the go-ahead to be built at the National Sports Campus in Blanchardstown in West Dublin. When complete it will comprise 14 grass nets, five artificial pull-out bays and a 90 metre outfield for fielding drills.
On a site granted by the State, the €600,000 development will be funded by the ICC, businessman Denis O'Brien and Sport Ireland.
According to chief executive Warren Deutrom, "this will genuinely help us transform into the team that John Bracewell wishes to shape - one that stays, trains and tours together, rather than prepares purely for one-off games or major events."
Deutrom thanked ICC and Sport Ireland, and added: "I would also like to extend our particular gratitude to Denis O'Brien, who continues to play a vital, yet unheralded role, in the growth of Irish cricket.
"For the last 10 years Denis has always been ready to answer our call, from supporting our team in the Caribbean World Cup in 2007 and then our first cohort of contracted players, to helping us stage our major matches - and now, helping us build our first outdoor performance centre. He has played a central role in helping us punch above our weight on the world stage and, for this, we are enormously grateful."
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