Ireland captain William Porterfield makes World Cup plea to ICC

By Stephan ShemiltBBC Sport in Adelaide
Ireland's William Porterfield
William Porterfield scored 107 in Ireland's defeat by Pakistan

Ireland captain William Porterfield says the International Cricket Council should develop the game rather than cut the number of teams at the World Cup.

The Irish narrowly missed out on a place in the quarter-finals, but may not feature in 2019 when the tournament is reduced from 14 to 10 teams.

"Why don't 10 teams just play cricket and every other country in the world not bother?" said Porterfield.

"It's the ICC, supposedly global. They have to develop the game."

Batsman Porterfield was speaking after Ireland's seven-wicket defeat by Pakistan, which meant they missed out on a spot in the last eight on net run rate after winning half of their six Pool B games.

Ireland's results at the 2015 World Cup
West IndiesNelsonWon by four wickets
UAEBrisbaneWon by two wickets
South AfricaCanberraLost by 201 runs
ZimbabweHobartWon by five runs
IndiaHamiltonLost by eight wickets
PakistanAdelaideLost by seven wickets

Ireland have beaten a Test nation in three successive World Cups, with their victories in Australia and New Zealand including wins over West Indies and Zimbabwe.

"We've shown what we can do," said the Warwickshire left-hander. "The ICC can't say that they are having fewer teams to make the World Cup shorter, because the next tournament is longer than this one."

Eight places in the next tournament will be allocated according to the world rankings, with Ireland likely to compete for the two remaining spots in a qualifying competition in Bangladesh.

Ireland players celebrate victory over Zimbabwe
Ireland beat two Test-playing nations in this World Cup: West Indies and Zimbabwe

If they fail to qualify, it would be the first World Cup without the Irish since 2007.

"I'd love to think that we haven't played our last World Cup game," said 30-year-old Porterfield. "I'm sure the ICC are hoping everything blows over and they don't hear much from us, then it's easy to sweep under the carpet."

Ireland have the opportunity to earn Test status via the 2017 Intercontinental Cup, but Porterfield says his team need more one-day internationals against top sides before thinking about playing the longer form of the game.

"Yes, it's something we want and the pathway is there, but we need to play the volume of fixtures before we get to that stage," he said.

Former England captain Michael Vaughan on BBC Test Match Special
"Ireland are always competitive. You rarely watch an Ireland team play a top team and it is over at halfway. Of all the associate nations over the last two World Cups, Ireland are the ones who stand out."

"We have six weeks until the next game, a one-off fixture against England. It's great that we've got that fixture, but it's a big gap. Those are the gaps that need to be filled before we build for Test status."

Ireland would have reached the last eight for the second time if they had beaten Pakistan in Adelaide, but saw their total of 237 overhauled with 23 balls to spare.

"It's difficult to say it was a missed opportunity," added Porterfield. "We've beaten two Test nations and played some very good cricket.

"We're disappointed. We came in with high hopes because we believe we can beat anyone. When we sit and reflect, we can be very happy with what we have achieved."

Listen to highlights from Test Match Special's and 5 live Sport's 2015 World Cup coverage.

Pool B
QSouth Africa6420+1.718
QWest Indies6330-0.056


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