Ireland Super Series set to return to three-team format; Leah Paul to captain Dragons

Women's CricZone Staff
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Cricket Ireland announces squads for Super Series; venues yet to be finalised

Leah Paul in action. © Cricket Ireland/Sportsfile

Super Series will go back to three-team affair with Dragons joining Scorchers and Typhoons, Cricket Ireland (CI) announced on Wednesday (March 9). The tournament was – both in 50-over and T20 format – condensed to two teams during the last two seasons.

Gaby Lewis’ Scorchers won the Super 50 Cup as well as the Super T20 Trophy in the T20 series. The opener will continue to lead the side with her partner from the national side, Leah Paul will captain Dragons. Ireland skipper Laura Delany will once again be in charge of Typhoons. Paul will have allrounder Orla Prendergast and teenage prodigy Amy Hunter for company at Dragons.

“I was delighted to be asked to captain the Dragons in 2022. Taking on a new challenge like this will be exciting, and I am looking forward to working with a new head coach and a new squad of players over the coming season,” Paul said.

“While I will miss the camaraderie that the Scorchers squad built up over last season’s successful Cup and Trophy campaigns, you just have to look at the Dragons squad to recognise that they are a group of players who will be keen to show their talent on the field. I expect the captaincy challenge will be as much about getting team dynamics right as it will be about getting team tactics right – but it’s a challenge I am absolutely looking forward to.

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Ireland men’s international James Cameron-Dow will coach the Dragons side, while Glenn Querl will be the coach of Scorchers yet again. With former Claire Shillington relinquishing her post, Typhoons will look to hire a new person to be at the helm as they set out to reprise their success from the 2020 season.

“Most followers will agree that the quality of cricket on display in the condensed two-team format over the last two years was remarkable. However, with the national team’s qualification for the ICC Women’s Championship, it is now more important than ever that we expand the talent pool supporting the international level to provide a sustainable pipeline of talent,” Carrie Archer, chair of national selectors, said.

Ireland have qualified for the ICC Women’s Championship for the next cycle alongside Sri Lanka and will play a minimum of 27 ODIs in the next three years.

“With a greater volume of international cricket comes a greater need to have players ready to step up to the international stage – and to achieve this, it is essential that we have a strong Super Series competition that draws players from all parts of the island,” Archer added.

“With the prospect of playing regular international cricket against the world’s best sides, the competitiveness of the Super Series is only set to grow further. This year the Selectors have been encouraged to see so many players over recent years from the two northern provincial unions really put their hand up and make compelling arguments for selection. In recognition of this, we have selected the highest number of players ever drawn from clubs north of the border to play in the Super Series.”

The series will start with the Super 50 fixture between Typhoons and Scorchers on May 1. After five matches of the 50-over fixture, Super 20 Cup to be played from June 26 to July 10. The season will end with rest of the one-dayers with the final match on August 10.

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Dragons: Leah Paul (c), Amy Caulfield, Alison Cowan, Zara Craig, Alana Dalzell, Mollie Devine, Sarah Forbes, Abbi Harrison, Amy Hunter, Charlotte Lyons, Kia McCartney, Kate McEvoy, Cara Murray, Orla Prendergast, Jemma Rankin

Scorchers: Gaby Lewis (c), Christina Coulter Reilly, Rachel Delaney, Shauna Kavanagh, Anna Kerrison, Hannah Little, Sophie MacMahon, Niamh MacNulty, Aimee Maguire, Jane Maguire, Lara Maritz, Ellie McGee, Eimear Richardson, Jenny Sparrow, Siúin Woods

Typhoons: Laura Delany (c), Ava Canning, Sarah Condron, Georgina Dempsey, Rebecca Gough, Maria Kerrison, Robyn Lewis, Louise Little, Joanna Loughran, Tess Maritz, Lara McBride, Celeste Raack, Freya Sargent, Rebecca Stokell, Mary Waldron