Ireland relishing challenge of taking on England at T20 World Cup

Ireland head coach Heinrich Malan is relishing the "challenge" of taking on England as the sides prepare for their first World Cup meeting in 11 years.

On that occasion, Ireland claimed what might still be the biggest win in their history as Kevin O'Brien clattered the fastest ODI World Cup century off just 50 balls to down England by three wickets.

Paul Stirling and George Dockrell played on that memorable night and should be involved at the MCG on Wednesday as Ireland try to rebound from their opening T20 World Cup Super 12s loss against Sri Lanka.

But Malan insisted there has been no reminiscing about what happened at Bangalore in 2011 in the current Irish dressing room, indicating they are fully focused on this fixture.

"There's obviously a lot of water that's gone under the bridge between now and then," Malan said.

"There's a nice rivalry between the two nations but it's making sure that we understand the situation, the conditions, the opposition. We use that as a competitive advantage.

"We haven't played them in white-ball cricket for a long period of time, so it'll be a nice challenge.

"We've shown that we've got a couple of guys that have put their names in lights, and that's the opportunity that we're looking forward to. Hopefully we can come out firing."

Ireland, who also beat England in an ODI in 2020 in the last encounter between the teams, reached the main stage by overcoming Scotland and two-time champions the West Indies in the first round.

They received a knockback ahead of their nine-wicket defeat against Sri Lanka on Sunday as Dockrell tested positive for Covid but while he is able to play, the 30-year-old has to practice away from the rest of the squad and travel separately to grounds on match and training days.

"He's been following the protocols to make sure that he can still be ready to play and obviously has been playing, but just in an isolated environment," Malan added.

"It's probably just a normal day in international sport. When something changes the whole time, you've got to adapt and you've got to get on with it.

"In a perfect world, it wouldn't happen, but it is what it is and we've adapted around it - we've made sure that we've put measures in place to adequately prepare."

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