When India’s limited-overs side takes on Ireland in a two-match T20I series, starting Sunday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly will be present at The Village, Malahide in Dublin, to watch Hardik Pandya and his men in action.
Ganguly confirmed the development to Sportstar on Thursday.
Earlier, the Board president and a few office-bearers of the BCCI were expected to be present for India’s Test match against England at Edgbaston on July 1. But according to the latest itinerary, Ganguly will be leaving for Ireland on Saturday, and will head to England after watching the T20I series.
With the regular team busy with preparations for the Test against England, India has fielded a new white-ball team for the T20Is against Ireland under the leadership of Hardik Pandya. In the absence of Rahul Dravid, the National Cricket Academy chief VVS Laxman will coach the team for the Ireland tour.
After enjoying a short break at home, the players left for Ireland in the early hours of Thursday and the team is expected to have a training session after reaching Dublin, before playing the first game on Sunday.
Touring the country for the first time since 2018, it will be a challenge for the white-ball team to get into shape before turning up in England for a full-fledged T20I series. While this is an opportunity for the youngsters to prove their mettle, the two-match series will be a big occasion for Hardik to lead the Indian team after enjoying success with the Gujarat Titans in the Indian Premier League.
The tour of Ireland will also give Dinesh Karthik a chance to cement his place ahead of the T20 World Cup. After a series of consistent performances in the IPL, Karthik played the home series against South Africa and in the cool confines of Ireland, the seasoned campaigner will be hoping to keep the momentum going.
The first match will be played on Sunday, followed by the final next Tuesday.