We are ready to face spin-friendly conditions: Porterfield

Dhaka, Feb 24 (PTI) Dismissing Bangladesh captain ShakibAl Hasan''s suggestion that Ireland will struggle on thespin-friendly conditions here, Irish skipper WilliamPorterfield insisted that his team is well prepared to handleany situation when they take on the hosts in their Group BWorld Cup match tomorrow.

"We know what to expect. Spin will obviously play a partin this World Cup and more so in Bangladesh, whose game planis all about spin. But we feel we are ready," saidPorterfield.

"It has been a very good preparation for the tournamentwhere the focus was obviously on playing spin. We want to putin a performance in the World Cup that will make people sit upand take notice again," he added.

Porterfield, however, admitted that hosts Bangladeshstart as favourites in tomorrow''s day-night clash at theSher-e-Bangla stadium.

"They are playing at home, so that is to be expected."

Ireland knocked out Pakistan in the first round of theprevious edition of the World Cup in the Caribbean and thenbeat Bangladesh in the Super Eights round but when Porterfeildwas asked about it, he refused to read much into it.

"The 2007 World Cup was a while ago, where conditionswere different," the skipper of the non-Test nation, said.

"The last time we played in Bangladesh, we were taken bysurprise by the heat, the humidity and the spinners. But thistime we will not be found wanting. There is a lot morepreparation done and we have spent a week in Dhaka gettingused to the conditions," he added.

Going into the match tomorrow, Ireland would take heartfrom their two successive victories over Bangladesh in majorevents -- beating them by 74 runs in the 2007 World Cup andthen clinching a six-wicket win in the World Twenty20 inEngland in 2009.

The current Irish squad looks more formidable with nineplayers from 2007 World Cup, besides the presence of batsmanEd Joyce, who has played 17 one-dayers for England beforeopting to return to his birth land.

Former West Indian batsman Phil Simmons, who is now thecoach of Ireland, felt the present side was stronger than theone that played in the previous World Cup.

"The difference this time is that 13 of the 15 playersearn their living from cricket, that''s practically a full-timesquad," said Simmons.

To which Porterfield added, "We may have lost thesurprise factor, because most teams know us better now. But wewant to test ourselves against the best."

On the other hand, Bangladesh who lost their openingmatch against India by 87 runs, cannot afford another defeat.

So all in all, a keen contest is on the cards.

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