Andrew Balbirnie: Ireland captain eyes return of home games in 2021

Andrew Balbirnie
Andrew Balbirnie was named captain of Ireland in November last year

Ireland captain Andrew Balbirnie says he hopes to show home fans "what this team can do" next year after a Covid-hit 2020.

The coronavirus pandemic wiped out all home internationals this year although a stunning ODI victory over England did provide fans with something to cheer.

"I hope we can play in front of a home crowd next year," said Balbirnie.

"We want to entertain the people who have put so much into the sport and helped us get to where we are now."

The top-order batsman, who finished the season with Glamorgan in the T20 Blast, hit a superb 113 in Ireland's shock win over England in Southampton in August.

Ireland started the year with a tour of the West Indies and Twenty20 series against Afghanistan in India before the Covid-19 outbreak left them with just three summer games against England.

Sporting casualty

Balbirnie's team also missed out on playing at the Twenty20 World Cup this year after the tournament in Australia was postponed to 2022.

"You want to play in those world events - the 2015 World Cup is still probably the highlight of my career with the buzz you get from playing in front of those crowds," added the 29-year-old.

"A big thing for me is I want to play on home soil in front of an Irish crowd and I want to show the Irish supporters what this team can do.

"They were able to see what we could do in the Caribbean, India and Southampton. It's a young and exciting squad but also a squad that has a lot of its foundations built up by the clubs in Ireland."

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