WWT20: ‘Ireland here to compete with the best’- newcomer Raack

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By Akeem Greene

Though ranked tenth by the International Cricket Council in Women’s T20, Ireland are bringing a persona to show they are not caged by numbers or placements, but rather play to their fullest potential and challenge the best. That is viewpoint of uncapped leg-spinner Celeste Raack.

After arriving on Monday evening, Ireland women got down to business in their World T20 campaign with a training session at the National Stadium, Providence on Wednesday.

“For us we really want to compete with the best nations in the world. We feel we can stake our claim on the world stage in this tournament and really play well as a team,” Raack stated in an address to media operatives.

Ireland and Bangladesh reached the WWT20 after topping their groups at the qualifiers held in Netherlands in July. At the previous edition of the tournament in 2106, they lost all four of their group matches and the 24-year-old expressed they are out to make amends.

“Most definitely, we have been training very hard the last few months in the build up to this tournament. We have a new facility back home which is fantastic. We have a got a very good squad that we are bringing so it is going to be some exciting time for us.”

She added, “We brought a really strong squad for this tournament, we got quite a few players at the end of their career who are still play the best cricket of their lives and we have got some very exciting young and upcoming talent with some young girls who have been playing really good.”

The Ireland players having some fun before practice

The leggie, who is Australian-born, stated the preparation has them in good spirits and the conditions should play in their favour.

“We have had really good psychologist input, nutritionist and we went on a camp in La Manga, [in Spain] which gave us experience on turf pitches and chance to get together as a squad. We are in a really good position as we could possibly at this stage.”

“We have been working hard in training on our individual skills and playing as a unit. It is great to have the whole squad here training and get acclimatise to these conditions. We have been watching the CPL (Caribbean Premier League) back in Ireland and we have seen the wickets are nice and slow and are great for spinners. It is very exciting times for a leg-spinner in T20 cricket at the moment, bowling in conditions like this here in Guyana.”

Ireland are in Group B alongside Australia, India, New Zealand and Pakistan and will have two warm-up matches before their first match on November 11 against Australia at Providence.

Ireland squad: Laura Delany (capt), Kim Garth, Cecelia Joyce, Isobel Joyce, Shauna Kavanagh, Amy Kenealy, Gaby Lewis, Lara Maritz, Ciara Metcalfe, Lucy O’Reilly, Celeste Raack, Eimear Richardson, Clare Shillington, Rebecca Stokell, Mary Waldron.

See additional photos of training here: https://www.facebook.com/newsroomgy/posts/2410000249276994?__xts__[0]=68.ARCZIvw8nlCByTOWiVovy94Q4QwtAPcaF6Tpjprf3_3BVDuCKSaHkGu0dU1YH7hDFIERVsbJGrv6UfzhSYnXskYv-2iw-3z8_4W0TuxI5Pkoq8TBqWgGUXc0LfA3NvnJXYmtioGnVbgXxRW4rElTQXdT4q7QVi4vtbN4FIAkjp9rl5NVnZpj0rqW4ESk1_8s3Ike5zGkRHej_MDsczvQEkDc&__tn__=C-R

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