Irish fast bowler Boyd Rankin has decided to stop representing his home country at the international level in order to play Test cricket for England. The pacer described that he would stop playing for Ireland after the upcoming Twenty20 World Cup.

"There’s been lots of sleepless nights recently. It was a very difficult decision, but I will be retiring from playing cricket for Ireland after the World Twenty20, as I feel I can’t continue to play the amount of cricket I have been playing with Warwickshire,
England Lions and Ireland over the last few years,” he told ESPNcricinfo.

Rankin will become the third Irishman to switch allegiance to neighbouring England. Ed Joyce earlier decided to start playing for Ireland after representing England for a while. On the contrary, Eoin Morgan quit playing for Ireland in order to make himself
available for England.

Rankin uttered that playing Test cricket is his main objective, adding that since Ireland are in no position to go for the longest version of the sport, he decided to try his luck in England.

He shared, “To play Test cricket is my ultimate goal. I don’t see it happening for Ireland, though it would be a dream to do so. I know the reality, and that’s why I am ready to play for England at Test-match level. I have to keep pushing myself and make
sure I’m capable of playing Test cricket."

"I’ve got my head down and working hard to achieve my ambition. In the mean time I am fully committed to playing for Ireland. But I know that to play Test cricket I have to target the England squad.”

The 28-year-old has played in 37 One Day International (ODI), picking up 43 wickets at an average of 32.34. His T20 record is also quite impressive, as he has 17 wickets to his credit. He has represented Derbyshire, England Lions and Warwickshire so far
in his career.

Rankin’s tremendous first-class record proves his ability to be successful in the longer version of the game. The right-arm quick bowler has grabbed 161 wickets in only 50 first-class matches.