"On and off the pitch, administrators and a lot of people have devoted a lot of their lives to make this happen".
According to the ICC website, the team includes Ed Joyce, Paul Stirling, Kevin O'Brien, Niall O'Brien, Gary Wilson, Stuart Thompson, Tim Murtagh, Boyd Rankin, Andre Balbirnie, Andy McBrine, Tyrone Kane, Nathan Smith and James Shannon.
Imam's selection in the squad provoked allegations of nepotism.
Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed told reporters at the Malahide ground on Thursday that the tourists would field the same side as played in their preceding nine-wicket win at Northamptonshire, in what will be Ireland's first Test match.
"It is a bit stereotypical, but if we get a bit of sideways movement it is the main aspect we want to bring to the table".More news: SpaceX launches its newest Falcon 9 rocket
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It meant that having waited so long just to arrive on the five-day scene, Ireland would have to wait a while more to actually begin their maiden Test. "But we've as much chance as anyone if we do the basics right, in our own conditions we will give ourselves a very good chance", he added. "There is a lot of experience in our line-up, exciting youth as well, so I don't see any reason why (we can't win)".
"It would be great if we could play quite a few Tests a year, but it is not financially viable as it stands", the 33-year-old added.
"A couple of guys have faced him in county cricket and multi-day games and we played against them in white-ball cricket".
The miserable conditions did not allow time for a toss, with those in the ground retreating to covered marquees for an early opportunity to sample the Guinness while the players were left to kick their heels, some venturing out to speak to the fans.
It's a day they thought would never come, but they all deserve their place on the biggest stage.