No home matches for Ireland as Pakistan, New Zealand postpone tours

LONDON (AFP) – Ireland will have no home internationals this season after it was announced on Thursday that tours by Pakistan and New Zealand had been postponed due to the coronavirus.

COVID-19 had already forced the postponement of Ireland’s early season games against Bangladesh and now a two-match Twenty20 international series against Pakistan has gone the same way.

Meanwhile New Zealand’s tour of Europe has been postponed as well.

The World Cup runners-up were due to arrive in June and play a eight limited-overs fixtures, with 20-over and 50-over matches against Scotland in Edinburgh, a T20 against the Netherlands in Rotterdam, as well as five games against Ireland in Bready and Belfast.

Cricket Ireland have forecast there will be a 30 percent drop in their year-on-year revenue, with the board’a annual income estimated at EUR9.5-10 million (USD10.2-10.8 million).

Although there will be some savings from not staging cricket, these will go to pay for as-yet-unknown additional fixtures in 2021.

Ireland do have three one-day internationals away to England scheduled for September, but the uncertainty over whether Pakistan’s tour of England can go ahead has led them to call off the Irish leg of their trip.