Ireland captain William Porterfield is already dreaming of another World Cup fairytale as his side begin their bid to qualify for the 2011 tournament.
Porterfield was one of the stars of his country’s 2007 campaign, which saw them cause a sensation by beating Pakistan in the group stage to qualify for the Super Eight.
They also claimed a dramatic tie with Zimbabwe, as well as beating Bangladesh in the Super Eight thanks to a man-of-the-match 85 from opening batsman Porterfield.
Ireland kick off their 2011 campaign at Willowmoore Park in South Africa tomorrow against the Scotland side who beat them in the final of the last qualifying tournament four years ago.
Both are expected to progress from Group A, which also contains Canada, Namibia, Oman and Uganda, while Group B includes Kenya, Netherlands, Bermuda, United Arab Emirates, Denmark and Afghanistan.
Porterfield said: “The World Cup did massive things for cricket back home.
“You heard people talking about cricket that would never talk about it before.
“Half the people didn’t know we had a team, so if anything, it had a really good effect.”
Reflecting on the first match, he said: “The first game of the tournament is a massive one.
“To be honest, we’re not looking past that as yet. If we can come and play our normal game, to our potential, then the result will take care of itself.”