Graham Ford to step down as Ireland’s Head Coach with immediate effect

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Graham Ford to step down as Ireland’s Head Coach with immediate effect

Graham ford will step down from his role of Ireland’s Head Coach with immediate effect announced Cricket Ireland on November 17. Ford stepping down from the role of Head Coach will bring an end to his four-year-long tenure with the national team.

Graham Ford joined Ireland’s team as a Head Coach in 2017 on a three-year contract which was extended to another three years in 2019. He will leave the role after the end of his contractual period which will complete in mid-December.

“The last four years have been very special for me – I have enjoyed many happy days with a cricket squad made up of very special people,” said Ford. “I have also enjoyed watching club cricket and experiencing the passion and club loyalty of many fine cricketing people.

“When compared with the other ICC Full Member nations, Cricket Ireland has faced many handicaps and challenges. Despite this, on several occasions, the team has competed impressively with some of the top teams in world cricket and it has been a privilege for me to experience first-hand the character and togetherness of the Irish players.

“However, over a period of time, these challenges and handicaps have taken their toll on me. After much consideration and discussion with my family, I realize that this is the right time for me to step away from Cricket Ireland.

“I’d like to end by thanking all the players and the support staff for their impressive attitudes and loyal support during the four years and I look forward to watching them achieve big things in the future.”

Under Ford’s coaching Ireland has played 102 International matches –  51 T20Is, 47 ODIs, 3 Tests, and 1 List A match. He led Ireland through their test cricket debut against Pakistan. In the T20 World Cup 2021, Ireland finished on the third spot in the Round 1 fixtures but failed to qualify for the Super 12s stage.

Andrew Balbirnie, Ireland’s captain, heaped praise on Ford, describing him as “one of the best coaches” he has worked with. “I feel very fortunate that I got to spend four years working with him, not just for the playing development side of my game, but for his incredible support during my captaincy to date.

“We have had our challenges over the last number of years as a squad, but his consistent positivity has been infectious and his determination to improve the skills of everyone in the squad has brought some of our young cricketers on leaps and bounds. I think more important than anything is that Fordy is a brilliant person and one that will be greatly missed in and around the squad, and on behalf of the group of players we wish him nothing but the best in the future”, he added.

Meanwhile, an interim coach for Ireland’s national team will be appointed in the coming weeks. Ireland is slated to tour the USA in December after which they will play white-ball series against the West Indies in January.

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