Seamer Graham Hume and allrounder Fionn Hand have been offered Ireland retainer contracts after batting allrounder Luke Georgeson withdrew from his contract last month. Conor Olphert, meanwhile, was handed an educational contract as Ireland aim to strengthen their fast-bowling pool ahead of their home season, which begins with a two-match T20I series against India in June.
Georgeson, who was born in Wellington and represents them in New Zealand domestic cricket, initially chose to commit his future to Ireland before making a U-turn to chase his New Zealand dream once again.
“With an earlier contract offer to Luke Georgeson not being taken up, we have been able to utilise the funds to invest in our future bowling succession planning, and ensure we have resources in place to cover our international cricket schedule,” Richard Holdsworth, High Performance Director for Cricket Ireland, said in a media release. “With several injuries currently being managed, and a heavy programme of cricket this summer, we are seeking to improve depth in our bowling ranks and ensure players are ready for international cricket further down the line.”
Ireland’s head coach Heinrich Malan welcomed the new faces into the set-up. “Graham, Fionn and Conor have deserved their opportunities through hard work, perseverance, and their performances on the field, and I welcome them into the senior performance group,” Malan said. “To my mind, each of these players are emblematic of what we need to create more of in Ireland – dedicated and committed players who strive day-in and day-out to improve their game. I know this is a trait of the great Irish sides we have seen over the years, and I want to foster a culture that builds on this – that talent and performance gets rewarded.”