Craig Young replaces Nathan Smith in Ireland squad for Pakistan Test

Kevin O'Brien hit the fastest century in World Cup history he scored a 50-ball hundred against England in the 2011 World Cup

Well wishes for Ireland coming in from around the world of cricket, four-page pullout supplements in national newspapers and even Test cricketers-to-be bringing out tea for the hordes of journalists at Malahide. Among them is Ed Joyce, the leading run-scorer in Irish cricket.

Young, 28, has played 13 one-day internationals and 15 Twenty20 Internationals for Ireland and made his global debut in 2014.

Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed backed Ireland to take its experience from limited-overs matches and thrive in the Test format. 18 years ago, when women's cricket was yet to be taken over by the ICC, the Ireland women's team had hosted Pakistan for a one-off Test, which remains the only one that has been played in the country until now. The left-hander actually featured for England in that World Cup despite having had helped Ireland qualify for the very same tournament.

"It is a massive occasion for everyone involved in Irish cricket... something that we have built up to for a long time, since the decision was made in June 2017 to get across the line in terms of Full Membership", gushed Porterfield. Jokes apart, it was a sad day for Pakistan as a nation, so hopefully we'll get our own back by winning the Test.

Ed Joyce, who could become one of the sport's oldest Test debutants at 39, said the chance of taking the field in Test whites was still a "pinch me moment" for him.

"But they're a very strong team Pakistan".

The Middlesex professional missed the last round of county championship action with tightness in his calf but he has been home for the last week and after training between the showers at the Test match venue yesterday, he reports no problems.

Sorensen took 95 wickets at the impressive average of 20.16 in his 68 appearances for Ireland from 2012 to 2016.

"And the risk for us is huge because it's an untested format".

Despite Ireland's recent success in global cricket, the sport is yet to go mainstream in the country.

"But you know what?"

T20 worldwide cricket is the way we will grow the sport globally, there are more T20 domestic leagues than there are 50 over leagues so we need to grow the global game in this format, making it as easy as possible for more countries to compete.

"It is a privilege to be a part of this historic Test match and all of us are really looking forward to it", the 30-year-old said.

It will be a very special day for everyone connected with the game in Ireland and the fruition of a long-term ambition to play Test cricket.

"We played our first match against Kent and they (Imam and Sami) both played together so we saw who was playing well", added the wicket-keeper.

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