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I hope it's not all downhill from here - Campher


Ireland's Curtis Campher. Photo: Reuters

Ireland's Curtis Campher. Photo: Reuters

Ireland's Curtis Campher. Photo: Reuters

Curtis Campher admits his international call-up has "all been a bit of a blur" after starring for Ireland with an unbeaten half-century and a wicket with his fourth ball against England on Thursday.

The 21-year-old South African-born all-rounder was expecting to spend the summer with YMCA in Leinster club cricket but was not able to play a competitive game in Ireland before making his ODI debut against the world champions at the Ageas Bowl.

"I didn't expect things to happen so fast," Campher said. "I first made contact with the Ireland team when they came to play ODIs in South Africa four years ago and after getting the offer of a contract this year it's been fantastic and I've been trying to take it all in, and enjoy it."

A well-organised batsman and skiddy fast-medium seamer, Campher was delighted to come in alongside one of his heroes, Irish veteran Kevin O'Brien.

"It was great to start off batting with Kevin because, along with Jacques Kallis, he is one of the players I've always looked up to. If I could have half the career he's had I'd be very happy. He calmed me down and the important thing at that stage was not to give any more wickets away and look to get some runs on the board. If we could have scored around 260 that would have been very competitive on that pitch."

Campher was stranded on 59 not out from 118 balls when Ireland were bowled out 172 and had Tom Banton caught behind in his first over.

For today's second game of the World Cup Super League, Ireland have brought left-arm spinner George Dockrell in to their 14-man squad along with seamer Peter Chase, replacing injured duo Barry McCarthy and Boyd Rankin.

Campher believes Ireland have the beating of England but he worries he may not be able to live up to his own dream start. "To be honest, I did lie in bed thinking, 'Jeez, how do I follow that?' I hope it won't be all downhill from here." It won't be.

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