Rankin in Ireland World T20 party

Warwickshire paceman Boyd Rankin has been named in an experienced 15-man Ireland squad for the World Twenty20 in India.

The 31-year-old announced he was switching allegiances back to Ireland, having made 11 international appearances for England, last December.

Rankin made his Ireland return last month, taking six wickets in an ICC Intercontinental Cup win over Papua New Guinea, and will be joined in the party by fellow bowler Tim Murtagh.

The Middlesex seamer missed the chance to represent Ireland at the 2015 World Cup due to a stress fracture in his right foot.

Skipper Will Porterfield is one of five members, along with the O’Brien brothers, Paul Stirling and Gary Wilson, set to take part in their fifth World T20 after previously playing in events in England, West Indies, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

Paceman Boyd Rankin, centre, is back among Ireland's ranks for the World Twenty20 in India

The World T20 will be head coach John Bracewell’s first global event in charge of Ireland since replacing Phil Simmons.

“We are really looking forward to this World Cup, particularly with the return of Boyd Rankin,” Ireland chairman of selectors Alan Lewis said. “He gives our attack so much more balance and potency, as seen in our Intercontinental Cup win last week.

“As such a consistent performer I am also delighted to see Tim Murtagh in the squad for an event like this particularly as he missed the 2015 World Cup is such disappointing circumstances.

“These are the events that players want to excel in so hopefully with the lead time involved and the energy the team always show we can emerge out on top of the group in the first phase.”

Bracewell added: “The squad has got a real balance to it, with that blend of youth and experience that every coach likes. Ireland are now regular performers on the world stage so there’s no fear or intimidation factors.”

Ireland squad: Will Porterfield, Andrew Balbirnie, George Dockrell, Andy McBrine, Tim Murtagh, Kevin O’Brien, Niall O’Brien, Andrew Poynter, Stuart Poynter, Boyd Rankin, Max Sorensen, Paul Stirling, Stuart Thompson, Gary Wilson, Craig Young.  

Source: ECB

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