Despite ushering in a new generation, Ireland still remains a side that is capable of causing a big upset; here are three players Indian fans should keep an eye out for
Josh Little. Pic/ AFP
India is all set to play the first of two 2 T20I's against hosts Ireland on June 26th. Most fans will be equipped with a great deal of knowledge about the touring Indian side with the IPL and the subsequent South Africa series having recently wrapping up. But what about information on Ireland? Fear not, for we've got Indian fans covered. Here are three Irish players one should keep an eye out for in the upcoming series.
Paul Stirling has been one of Irish cricket's mainstays over the last decade. He is arguably Ireland's best ever player. The explosive opener has played 102 T20Is for the side and averages nearly 30 with the bat with a strong strike-rate of over 134. He's also a more-than-handy offspiner capable of getting key breakthroughs.
Despite not playing in the IPL, Stirling's prowess is well known in the global game and has played for T20 franchises in South Africa, England, Pakistan and Bangladesh to name a few. He's currently playing for the Birmingham Bears in the Vitality T20 Blast but has been in rather poor form lately, scoring 19 runs in his last 5 games. But on his day, he can take apart a bowling attack single-handedly.
Mark Adair, a medium fast bowler, has made himself a staple in Ireland's white ball sides over the last 3 years. Despite not possessing high pace, Adair seems to be an x-factor bowler and Ireland's primary wicket taking threat. In 39 T20Is he has picked up a very impressive 59 wickets at an average of just 16.88. Against full-member nations, he tends to go for a few runs but has also picked up 21 wickets in just 10 games. He can also use the bat to good effect lower down the order.
Josh Little is a left arm fast-medium bowler capable of bowling at a good pace and swinging the ball upfront. India's batting line-up has always been suspect when facing left arm swing bowlers, so Little could cause some major problems for the visitors in seamer friendly. He was also a net-bowler for Chennai Super Kings in this year's IPL.
Moreover, the 22-year-old seems to deliver his best performances against the big teams, such as his 4/23 against Sri Lanka last year, or his magnficent 9 wicket haul across 3 ODI games vs England. His overall T20I numbers read, 34 games, 31 wickets, an average of a shade under 30 and an economy rate of 7.5.