Belfast: Ireland captain William Porterfield sees the two match One-day series against Pakistan as a "massive one" in the context of getting a favourable decision from the International Cricket Council (ICC) on the participation of the associate nations in the 2015 World Cup.
The ICC, which had originally decided to limit the next World Cup in Australia and New Zealand to 10 full-member countries, will now be reconsidering the move in its annual conference in Hong Kong in June following protests by the more prominent associate nations such as Ireland and the Netherlands. ICC President Sharad Pawar had also intervened in the matter, asking the executive committee to review the controversial decision.
Porterfield said the home series against Pakistan starting here on Saturday will give his side great exposure and a good performance will make their case of competing in the mega event stronger.
"We are looking for positive results from the games. If we do that then it will enhance our chances and give us more ammunition. I have looked at these games as massive games for ourselves," Porterfield was quoted as saying by The Guardian.
"We are always crying out for more of them regardless of what is going on at the high table. To be honest it's a great opportunity for us to go out and play against the fifth-ranked team in the world. But from the standpoint of the World Cup, yes it is important."
Coach Phil Simmons, however, said Ireland have nothing to prove to ICC as they have got impressive results in the recent past. They were easily the best associate nation in the 2011 World Cup, beating England and stretching West Indies and Ireland in the league stages.
"I don't see these matches as a case of proving the ICC wrong," said Simmons.
"I think the cricket world knows that it (the ICC's) is the wrong decision. We will go out there and prove things to ourselves, that we can beat these top teams. The more we beat them the closer we will get to what we want to achieve, which is getting higher in the world rankings.
The second match of the series will be played at the same venue.