DUBLIN: Ireland had a wet welcome to test cricket on Friday with the opening day of its inaugural one-off match against Pakistan completely wiped out by bad weather.
The Irish will become the 11th nation to play the longest format, yet heavy overnight showers and further light rain and strong winds in the morning prevented the five-day game from starting on time.
The teams went to lunch without a ball bowled in the grounds of Malahide Castle, just north of Dublin.
The continuous steady drizzle turned to a huge downpour shortly after 2 p.m. local time and the game was called off for the day after a pitch inspection less than an hour later.
The International Cricket Council awarded Ireland test status in June last year.
Only 11 Irishmen have played test cricket, one for Australia in the very first test in 1877.
Fast bowler Boyd Rankin, who achieved his test ambition for England in 2014 and returned to Ireland in 2016, is part of the golden generation of Irish cricketers who have been rewarded with places in the first test squad. They include 39-year-old Ed Joyce, Kevin and Niall O’Brien, Gary Wilson and captain William Porterfield.
Pakistan’s team includes legspinner Shadab Khan, who took 10 wickets in a warmup win over Northamptonshire.