Boyd Rankin, Ireland’s fast bowler, made his test debut for England in January 2014 and admits that it will be strange to have to compete with some of his former team-mates in the one-off test on Wednesday, July 24th.
Rankin is one of a unique group of cricketers who have played test cricket for two different countries – a list that includes Billy Murdoch, who led Australia in 1882, and Ali Khan Pataudi, who led The Ashes, the former Indian captain Iftikhar and the former South African skipper Kepler Wessels. As he is on the field on Wednesday, he will be the only cricketer to play in tests against Pataudi for and against England.
The Londonderry born cricketer admitted that given his familiarity with the players and the lineup, it will be strange to play against England. “It gets pretty strange to me because I know her guys so well,” said Rankin. “It’s a dream come true that I never thought would happen in my career.”
Rankin’s test debut against Australia in the 2013/14 Ashes final in Sydney was as memorable as the series in England: they were whitewashed 5-0 and lost their # 1 rating. Rankin had previously injured his shoulder and was able to throw only 20.5 overs in both innings together. Rankin remembered the game and admitted that he should not have played because of his injury, but recognized the moment as a major part of his career.
“I injured my shoulder a few days before the test and did not get into the game,” said Rankin. “I felt like I had to try it. It was one of those that I did not know how bad it was until I got home. In retrospect, I should not have played, but if you have the opportunity to play Test Cricket, it’s one thing you want to take. “
“It was a tough journey at first. I made my debut and it was a blur, to be honest. I still have my shirts and caps. They are appreciated as this is a big part of my stay. “
“I have no regrets,” Rankin continued. “At this stage of my career, there were no real opportunities to play Test cricket for Ireland, which has now changed, but at the time I wanted to play at the highest level, and representing England was the only way I could would have.”
Rankin, who was part of Ireland’s historic, record-breaking victory over England in the group stage of the 2011 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, believed a test victory against England at Lord’s would make the 2011 winner.
“Test cricket is test cricket, it’s going to be tough, it’s going to be very warm, four tough days for us, but if we get a result here, it will be hard to beat that.”
Ireland, which received the test status in 2017, has lost its first two tests against Pakistan (at home) and Afghanistan (away). Rankin strives to achieve the first victory in Test Cricket.
“Everyone is looking forward to this special time,” he said. “It has been a lot of hard work over the past 10 years to reach this stage and we all wanted to reach that point when it comes to playing Test Cricket, it’s great to take this opportunity and here at Lord’s play.” this is a dream come true. “