Showing posts with label Canada. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Canada. Show all posts

Monday, 4 April 2011

Tournament review: Canada

Continuing our tournament reviews, here is an assessment of how Canada did.

Did as well as could reasonably have been expected. Canada beat Kenya convincingly – the only game they were expected to compete in – and reached 150-2 in the 29th over against Australia, as well as bowling Pakistan out for 184. In Ashish Bagai and Jimmy Hansra, they had a pair of fluent stroke-makers, while Harvir Baidwan’s seamers and Balaji Rao’s leg-spin were a threat.

Star man
Stylish and never overawed, Ashish Bagai took them to victory over Kenya, and then scored a commanding 84 at almost a-run-a-ball against New Zealand. He also kept wicket with great skill.

John Davison clubbed a brilliant 111 against the West Indies in the 2003 World Cup but, at 40, could barely muster a run.

Cricket needs to expand beyond the expat communities in Canada, and some respectable displays may have helped to do that. There are real plans to spread the sport in Canada, but it will be no easy task, especially as this could be their last ever appearance at a 50-over World Cup.

Monday, 26 March 2007

A Going Home XI

It’s the end of the group stages. Eight teams are going home, so the time has come to put together a team comprised of those who are now leaving. Good effort to all concerned – shame about your team-mates.

Imran Nazir – Pakistan – An awful World Cup for Pakistan, but the final innings for this young man in the highly emotional game against Zimbabwe was a masterpiece of hitting. 160 off just 121 balls with 8 sixes. It’s a shame he couldn’t do it earlier when it really mattered.

John Davison – Canada – Now no longer the scorer of the fastest World Cup hundred but still a force to be reckoned with, as New Zealand found out with a blistering 52 off 31 balls. Bizarrely not used at the top of the innings against Kenya, that decision could have made a big difference. Also successful with the ball, if somewhat expensive.

Steve Tikolo – Kenya – Another easy pick as Tikolo showed his class with bat and ball. A match winning 72 against Canada was followed by a rare failure against the Kiwis and 76 against England to keep the nerves jangling. Wickets as well although the bowling has gone from medium pace to slow.

Ravi Shah – Kenya – Where Tikolo failed, Shah succeeded with a classy knock against New Zealand.

Ryan ten Doeschate – Netherlands – Started with a fifty against South Africa, finished with 70 against Scotland, oozing class all the way through. It is easy to see why Essex rate him so highly. A big county season surely must follow. Also successful, if expensive, with the ball.

Sean Williams – Zimbabwe – Another batsman who bowls a bit, his 70 against the West Indies made the game competitive. A young player with a big future, Zimbabwean politics permitting.

Colin Smith(WK) - Scotland– In a disappointing World Cup for Scotland, Smith’s 51 against Australia was a big highlight. Stumping Mike Hussey in the same game will probably live long in the memory too!

Saleem Mukudden – Bermuda - Will have had Bangladesh in a state of shock after his early wickets left them at 37 for 3. Two wickets also against Sri Lanka, but, strangely, left out against India.

Elton Chigumbura – Zimbabwe – Just edges out teammate Gary Brent on the promise of things to come. Both were tidy. Both took wickets. Both did well in a group that was a lot tighter than was originally expected.

Billy Stelling – Netherlands – Not fit, but the captain dropped himself and he returns figures of 3 for 12 in 8 overs, ripping Scotland’s top order to pieces. This was a game that Scotland expected to win comfortably. Stelling ensured is was a low target for the Dutch to chase.

Mohammed Sami – Pakistan – Left out in favour of Rana Naved for the first match, he kept the Irish honest in that crucial game, removing Bray and Morgan early on.

Twelfth Man – Virender Sehwag - India – Looked like he was beginning to find some form, although a hundred against Bermuda for a man of his talent is scant consolation for what might have been had India qualified for the Super Eights. It was still more than his illustrious colleagues managed though.

Thursday, 22 March 2007

Previews: New Zealand vs Canada and Scotland vs Netherlands

New Zealand have looked exceptionally strong so far in this tournament and I expect nothing less than another solid performance from them today. They are a professional unit, led by a great tactician and they know how to win one day matches. They really should outclass Canada today, who with six players over 34 in their team against England, really are not heading in the right direction.

The other match is the battle of the minnows and Scottish and Dutch fans alike will be relishing this encounter. It still could be slightly one sided though, with the Scots favourites. However, with the toss often playing such an important role in this tournament, when the matches are close, it still could be anyone's game and the Ducth do have the skills of Ryan ten Doeschate at their disposal.

New Zealand vs Canada:

Prediction: New Zealand no trouble.

Players to watch: Jacob Oram and Sunil Dhaniram.

Scotland vs Netherlands:

Prediction: The toss could be vital, but the Scots to earn a narrow victory if they win it.

Players to watch: Dougie Brown and Ryan ten Doeschate.

Sunday, 18 March 2007

Previews: England vs Canada and Australia vs Netherlands

No more shocks today people, plain sailing all the way! Six sixes anyone?!

England vs Canada:

Prediction: England, but probably with the odd hiccup!

Players to watch: Michael Vaughan (surely 100 up?!) and John Davison.

Australia vs Netherlands:

Prediction: Aussies to coast it.

Players to watch: Ricky Ponting and Ryan ten Doeschate, who else?!

Tuesday, 13 March 2007

Previews: Australia vs Scotland; Kenya vs Canada

Australia vs Scotland:

Prediction: Australia to cruise home.

Players to Watch: Ricky Ponting of course and Ryan Watson.

Kenya vs Canada:

Prediction: Kenya by a fairly comfortable margin. They are the side capable of a shock in this group.

Players to Watch: The two captains and war horses, Steve Tikolo and John Davison.

Tuesday, 20 February 2007

The Tuesday Lunchtime View – Who are the Minnows?

Three weeks today, on the 13th March, the whole jamboree begins, although it does look like being a phoney war for the first stages. The big eight countries are pulling away from the minnows as Zimbabwe move backwards at a rate of knots, only Bangladesh look like they have the experience and know-how to pull off an upset. In this preview, I will look at the teams ranked 9 to 16 according to the official World Cup seedings.

9) Zimbabwe
They’ve made the Super Six stage in the last two tournaments, but that was with a very different line up to the one that is now in place. The last World Cup was a catalyst for the turmoil that Zimbabwean cricket finds itself in, with the public displays of Henry Olonga and Andy Flower in denouncing the government. Since then, most of Zimbabwe’s better players have been discarded, including the Flower brothers, Heath Streak and Tatenda Taibu, leading to their teat playing status being suspended. The team has been thrashed by the other test playing countries, although they did manage a tight series win at home to Bangladesh last year, which was reversed earlier this year.

Grouped with West Indies, Pakistan and Ireland, their first game, against the Irish, is their only realistic hope of any success

10) Kenya
Semi-finalists last time round, although that was helped by the number of forfeited matches involving themselves and Zimbabwe. Heavily reliant on Stephen Tikolo in probably his final World Cup, Kenya have warmed up by winning the WCL trophy for the second rank of cricket playing nations. New talent is also coming through into the team, notably batsman Tanmay Mishra and left-arm spinner Hiren Varaiya

In the same group as England, New Zealand and Canada, they may have been hoping for an upset against a demoralised England team. However, it now appears that the best they can hope for is a comfortable win over Canada and to continue to dominate the non-test playing nations.

11) Bangladesh
A test playing nation since 2001, with definite signs of improvement being made since their debut, particularly in the sub-continent. They are still trying to break in with the big boys, however, and have spent a lot of the past year playing (and beating) Zimbabwe and Kenya. Under the astute coaching of Dav Whatmore, the team has recently beaten Sri Lanka (losing the One Day series 2-1) and memorably defeated the Australians in England during 2005. A lot will depend on the more experienced players, such as Ashraful, Rafique and Bashir, the captain, but they will be hopeful of causing an upset.

In the same group as Bermuda, India and Sri Lanka, the draw has not been unkind. Bangladesh have beaten both India and Sri Lanka over the past four years, and both of the bigger teams are prone to having an off-day. If an upset does happen, this is the group.

12) Scotland
A tremendous run of run of late saw them beating Kenya to reach the final of the WCL trophy, only to lose to the same opponents in the final. Firmly established as the next best team after Kenya, they are less reliant on their county stars, Gavin Hamilton, John Blain and Dougie Brown, than they used to be. Their introduction to the Pro40 league has helped to develop a squad which has now qualified for the 20:20 World Cup and will be looking to grow the game north of the border.

In the same group as the world number one team, South Africa and everyone’s whipping boys Australia. Similar to Kenya, they will be looking for a comfortable win against the other minnow in their group, the Netherlands, and to give one of the other teams a fright.

13) Ireland
Ireland are unfortunate in that their star batsman from the qualifying stages, Ed Joyce, has defected and should be opening the batting for England in the tournament itself. Disappointing in the ICC tournament in Kenya, they made up for matters by reaching the final of the Intercontinental Cup, the longer format of the game for non-test playing nations. Eoin Morgan, now on the books with Middlesex, and Andre Botha will be key to their batting.

In the same group as Zimbabwe above, that game will be their best chance of success.

14) Canada
Like Ireland, Canada have made the final if the Intercontinental Cup. They are heavily reliant on John Davison, a big hitting batsman, who scored 111 in 76 balls against the West Indies in the last World Cup.

Coached by former Notts bowler, Andy Pick, they will be targeting Kenya as their best chance of glory.

15) Bermuda
Captained by current Glamorgan captain David Hemp, Bermuda find themselves in the same group as Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and India. This is Bermuda’s first appearance at the Cricket World Cup and their most competitive game could be a warm up match against Zimbabwe .

16) Netherlands
The Dutch have the unenviable task of making up the numbers in the Australia, South Africa, Scotland group. This at least will give their players of South African descent, including Essex’s Ryan ten Doeschate, a chance to shine against the country of their ancestry.