On May 5 England’s cricket team will host Ireland for a One Day International match for the first ever between England and Ireland on English soil.
With a historic day penned into the calendar and in need of promoting, the England and Wales Cricket Board have done what any shrewd cricket body would do – bring in Irish comedian Dara O’Briain.
He tried his hand at commentary, by offering his voice to the two nations’ last meeting back in 2013 – well, it’s mostly just that game…
When O’Briain describes a six as a “touchdown” you’re left wondering whether he has much cricket knowledge at all. However he clearly remembered Ireland’s three-wicket victory over England at the 2011 cricket World Cup, or “that other game they played” – as he asked for it to be put on shortly after realising he was commentating on his team losing.
“Did you bring me here to show me Ireland losing?” protested O’Briain who was born in Bray, County Wicklow. “I had a whole ‘Theresa May your boys took a hell of a beating’ speech planned, you can’t do that about Ireland.”
Asked what Ireland’s chances are in England he said: “Oh we’ll hammer them. We will get 409 and they’ll get 12.
“No, to be fair I think it will be a pretty even series. I expect England to win the match at Bristol and then come to the second match at Lord’s slightly cocky. At the Home of Cricket, I think Ireland will post a huge score and then cleverly declare the game over.”
O’Briain also told his hosts at Lord’s Cricket Ground that he once played hurling for his school – a sport of Irish and Gaelic origin involving a stick called a hurley and a ball called a sliotar.
If you’re wondering what using these implements of sporting brilliance looks like – here’s O’Briain using them on the Lord’s pitch.
We can’t guarantee England’s series against Ireland will be as entertaining as that ball perfectly landing on that poor cameraman’s head – but perhaps if O’Briain agrees to give some commentary for that game too, it can get close…